Judge stops immediate release of police records

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A Bakersfield judge has issued a temporary order prohibiting the expanded release of police records.

A new law, enacted after growing national scrutiny of police misconduct, sought to make public some police records that previously were kept confidential to protect the privacy of law enforcement officers.

A number of news and public interest groups filed requests for records from several local police agencies, including the Bakersfield Police Department.

The police union — the Bakersfield Police Officers Association – sued the City of Bakersfield and the Bakersfield Police Department, seeking a court order to prevent the release of previously secret records.

Both sides were before Kern County Superior Court Judge Eric Bradshaw Wednesday morning. Also present was an attorney from the American Civil Liberties Union, which has filed requests for documents.

Bradshaw issued a temporary order prohibiting the release of the documents until May, when a fuller hearing can be held. His ruling was not based on whether the documents should be released, but whether the release can be delayed long enough for a complete hearing on the fact.

KGET’s Eytan Wallace was at the hearing and will have a full report on 17News at 5 p.m.

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