American Civil Liberties Union v. LaCabe

Case No. 2008-CV-4231, Denver District Court
ACLU Case No. 2008-09


This lawsuit, filed against Denver Manager of Safety Al LaCabe and the City and County of Denver, seeks disclosure of the policy and procedure manual for the downtown city jail, known as the Pre-Arraignment Detention Facility or PADF.  The Manager of Safety refused to produce the manual under Colorado open records laws based on the ground that disclosure would be “contrary to the public interest.”  The ACLU argues that disclosure of the PADF manual is in the public interest, noting the chronic problems with overcrowding and understaffing at the PADF, repeated instances of innocent parties being arrested and detained at the PADF in cases of mistaken identity, and a history of egregious delays in processing arrestees and failing to release arrestees long after they have posted bond.  The ACLU argues the public interest in disclosure of the PADF manual is especially strong in light of the upcoming Democratic National Convention, when large numbers of arrests could overload the system and cause excessive backlogs in processing, and serious problems with access to food, medicine, attorneys, sanitary facilities, and delivery of medical care to vulnerable detainees.


John Culver
Mark Silverstein , ACLU of Colorado Legal Director
Taylor Pendergrass , ACLU of Colorado Staff Attorney

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