House Enrolled Act 1022 would have required Indiana private university police departments to release a limited amount of records related to arrests and incarcerations, but would have still allowed the police departments to withhold investigatory records and the name of the crime victim, unless the victim authorized the release.
The Student Press Law Center requested records from 30 private universities’ police forces across the country. The vast majority were unwilling to part with the records, showing a hole in public access in higher education.
The state appellate court ruled that Notre Dame’s police force is a public agency subject to the public records law, but a bill heading to the governor’s desk would shield private universities from releasing the same amount of records as public institutions.
Lawyer Jack Greiner discusses his successful case where the Ohio Supreme Court determined that private universities had to disclose police reports.
A gray area exists as to whether open records law should be applied to private university law enforcement.