“Tucson PD releases names of people possibly connected to prostitutes — after removing those who happen to be cops.” That’s the headline atop a Radley Balko post about a decision by authorities in the Arizona city to do a splashy public release of the names and numbers of persons found on cellphones confiscated from massage parlors, despite the police chief’s own confirmation that the “inclusion of information in this list is in no way indicative of involvement in criminal activity”:
…before releasing the names of hundreds of people who appeared in the phones, the city police checked the names against the city’s roster of police officers. They then redacted those names, and released all the others. The police officers’ information won’t be released until they’ve had a chance to clear their names through an internal investigation. As for everyone else, well, good luck explaining…
P.S. But note that according to an anonymous commenter below, the general release of names wasn’t something up to city authorities’ discretion:
the names weren’t “released”, the Arizona Daily Star requested the names from police records (under a public records transparency law.) The police redacted the officer names because under the law they were under active investigation, which is a legal exception carved out due to unions.
If this account is accurate, while the episode had the effect of splashily shaming various Tucsonians who did not benefit from the special privacy protection available to cops, it’s misleading to suggest that that was the city’s intent.