A Miner Detail received copies of a secret dossier (2020-091) and a police report (case Number 2020-017544) regarding Deputy Editor Eric Beasley.
The 68-page document is not only about Mr. Beasley; numerous third parties are also included.
Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins and the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office appear to closely monitor A Miner Detail and many of its Frederick County readers.
- Mocking Frederick County Councilman Kai Hagen’s (D) balloon ban;
- Advocating for a recall provision in the Frederick County Charter;
- Lobbying Frederick County residents to vote against specific candidates;
- Asking why Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner (D) is sharing a podium unmasked and unsanitized with Frederick Mayor Michael O’Connor (D) during the height of COVID-19.
Alarm bells ringing around the following social media posts
- Rabbit selfies;
- Satire posts published by The Hagerstown Report;
- Satire posts about Jan Gardner resembling Carole Baskin.
Additional content deemed “alarming, threatening, or unstable:”
- Social media posts about Johnny Depp and Amber Heard;
- Posts about parental rights, specifically “fathers’ rights;.”
- Advocating for judicial reform legislation proposed by Gov. Larry Hogan (R).
Who else has a dossier?
Based on the criteria mentioned above, political activists exercising their First Amendment rights could also fall under the watchful eye of the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office.
Incidentally, the Frederick Sheriff’s Office stopped monitoring Mr. Beasley last May.
A step-by-step tutorial on how to request your own ‘secret’ dossier
Step 1: File a Maryland Public Information Request
Instructions for filing a Maryland Public Information Request are listed on the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office website.
You may choose to email your request to mhoffman@frederickcountyMD.gov. The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office has 30 days to respond, according to Maryland law.
(Please contact both the Maryland Attorney General’s Office and A Miner Detail if the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office chooses not to respond within the legally allowable 30 days.)
NOTE: Use the following verbiage when requesting your dossier: “any police information bulletins” and “any associated police reports.”
Step 2: The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office may deny your request.
The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office denied Mr. Beasley’s public information request when he first requested a copy of his dossier
You could reasonably expect to wait at least one year for the Sheriff’s Office to follow Maryland law, which obliged the Sheriff’s deputies to fulfill your public information request under the Maryland Code and Court Rules.
The FCSO may deny your claim outright or deny the existence of the documents.
Step 3: File a lawsuit
You have a legal right to file suit in Maryland Circuit Court when a government body denies a public information request.
The Student Press Law Center provides a free template to assist you with filing your suit.
You may choose to hire an attorney to assist with the process, though you are not required by law to have an attorney.
Step 4: The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office may contact you.
Public information request(s) lawsuits can be tedious to schedule and conduct.
A visiting judge outside Frederick County must preside over the case should your suit move into the trial phase.
The Frederick Courthouse must have space in its courthouse for a hearing. A lawyer representing the FCSO may contact you or your attorney (if you have one) intending to settle your suit outside of court.
Step 5: Terms of Settlement
You can receive up to $1,000 in actual damages under the law.
You may recoup court costs if you “substantially prevail.”
This means that if the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office forgoes trial in Circuit Court, you may be entitled to recoup the fees you paid to the Court to file suit.
Step 6: Pick up your dossier!
Pick up your documents and enjoy.
Please feel free to share the content with A Miner Detail.
Step 7: Enjoy a night out on the town with your spouse, partner, significant other, friend, or Eric and Ryan!
Pick Frederick County’s finest dining establishments; please consider supporting local businesses.
Enjoy the fruits of your labor.
(Please do not drink and drive. Call Eric or Ryan to pick you up from your extravagant evening – at no cost!)