Q: Is CJIS data for deceased persons, such as fingerprints protected by law from being released to family?
The family member is a retired custody commander of the arresting agency, seeking the fingerprints of a deceased family member who was held in the agency custody facility.
Under California law, the Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) data, which includes fingerprints, is generally protected and not released to the public, including family members. This protection applies even after the individual's death. The primary concern is to maintain the confidentiality and integrity of criminal justice records.
However, there may be exceptions under certain circumstances. For example, a court order might allow the release of such information. If the family member has a compelling reason, they might consider filing a request with the court.
Given the family member's background as a retired custody commander, it's important to follow the same legal procedures as any other member of the public. Their prior position does not automatically grant access to protected CJIS data. It's advisable to consult with a legal professional to explore all possible avenues and understand the legal framework surrounding such requests.
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