Scoop Media sues Montgomery County over redaction of public records

Scoop Media Group has filed suit in Chancery Court against Montgomery County, Tennessee, for denial of access to public records. In January, the local Court Clerk began redacting details from public arrest affidavits. The denials began after a phone call from the County’s Public Information Officer, Michelle Newell, who told Scoop that she did not agree with how Scoop published public records, and would be seeking legislation to prevent future publication, and would restrict access going forward.

In a lawsuit filed in Chancery Court on February 13th, Scoop Media Group petitions the court for access to public records and to obtain judicial review of the ongoing denial of access. Since June of 2019, Scoop Media Group has enjoyed the same access to public records as every other news organization or citizen, and as provided by the laws of the state of Tennessee. However, in January, the public information officer made the phone call below to the Scoop Media Offices, during which she states she is unhappy with the information being published by Scoop Media and will contact the County Court Clerk to have the information redacted so it isn’t available for publication, and will also seek legislation preventing such publication.

Loader Loading…
EAD Logo Taking too long?

Reload Reload document
| Open Open in new tab

Download [2.36 MB]

As shown in the attached exhibits to the lawsuit in the above document, the clerk is even redacting the names of people who file complaints, such as in thefts – which are in no way protected under any version of the law. In addition to redacting information, specific ‘breaking news’ affidavits have been given to other news organizations while requests from Scoop Media went unanswered until the county attorney was copied on the subsequent request for the same information.

Below is the phone call from Michelle Newell, Public Information Officer for Montgomery County, which set these actions in motion:

A Judge could hold the first hearing in the suit as soon as next week.

Jason Steen

Related posts

3 Thoughts to “Scoop Media sues Montgomery County over redaction of public records”

  1. Dustin

    You would think someone in her position would make herself aware of certain public records laws before making a call to the business with a complaint about the way information is being used. The owner of the company did possibly come across as being abrupt, but I think anyone can understand his attitude having to deal with an inquiry into why his company was doing something that is perfectly legal. Anyway just my thoughts

  2. Thawk

    Got love people that govern off feelings rather than following the laws…

  3. Faye Rennell Hobson

    In the State of Tennessee it’s all about feelings and power. It’s a good old boy/girl system that is out-of-control. The law in Clarksville, TN only mean someone will pay the price. I am a 57 year-old-African American “Black” female that have never committed a crime of any kind and never will. I filed a Petition for Grandparents Visitation. Corrupt people took advantage of such and decided to use my daughter and minor grandsons as a way to bring me down. I was arrested on false charges and quickly took action to resolve the matter. However, I see that the powers-to-be made it a point to place such in the hands of SCOOP Clarksville. However, they failed to report the false arrest, the intentional actions to frame a Whistleblower (that’s me), an attempt to cover up corrupt acts of injustice, covering of the fake identities of Clerks of Court and Paralegals, illegal actions of attorneys and judges. My name is Faye Rennell Hobson also known as Faye Morales. I am a Federal Whistleblower, but not by choice. As a Military dependent and a Military Spouse as well as a Licensed educator in multiple states. It was my duty, my obligation to report Fort Campbell Schools for being out of compliance with State and Federal Laws and Regulations pertaining to students with Special Needs. In 2005 when Fort Campbell soldiers were in and out of the WAR ZONES fighting for the freedoms Tennesseans enjoy every day, many of their children with special needs were not being properly serviced. Such occurred for an entire school year. Powers to be allowed a teachers aid to serve as teacher of record who had no legal authority to even hold an IEP meeting. Fort Campbell Schools received the funds to service students, but service was not provided. I was not going to lose my State or Federal license to cover up powers to be fraudulent acts. However, I am the one that has suffered for a decade plus years. In addition, my family has suffered as well. Many lawsuits have been filed about this and much more. I serve as a pro se litigant because every attorney I have hired has taken my cases not to ensure that I receive justice, but for unjust reasons. As such, I depend on my attorney name JESUS who is the head and not the tail of my life. And the corrupt powers to be do not know how to step to JESUS or his HOLY words. Every dirty trick that occurs in Court proceedings in TN I have witness from the Clerks office to the judges chambers. I have proof to support anything I say. I have many things to say, but NO ONE want to print the TRUTH, but All or quick to print lies that destroy peoples lives. But like me, when you know that you have done nothing wrong, you can hold your head up high. GOD is always watching and listening.

Leave a Comment