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BRADY-LUNNY v. MASSEY

February 8, 2002

EDITH BRADY-LUNNY AND PULITZER PUBLISHING COMPANY, D/B/A THE PANTAGRAPH, PLAINTIFFS,
V.
ROGER MASSEY, SHERIFF OF DEWITT COUNTY, DEFENDANT, AND UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, INTERVENOR.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Richard Mills, U.S. District Judge:

OPINION

The Pantagraph and its reporter want the Government to provide them with a list of federal inmates held in a county jail.

Are they entitled to it?

Security and privacy issues dictate the answer.

The answer is no.

FACTS

On October 13, 2000, Brady-Lunny sent Sheriff Massey a second Illinois FOIA request. Her second request asked Sheriff Massey to provide information for "all inmates." But Sheriff Massey declined Brady-Lunny's request on the basis that the Illinois FOIA statute, 5 ILCS § 140, et seq. (West 1994), created no jurisdiction over federal concerns.

Following the denial of Brady-Lunny's Illinois FOIA request, Brady-Lunny, The Pantagraph, and the Pulitzer Publishing Company filed suit against Massey to require him to produce the requested information. The United States intervened in an effort to protect information about federal inmates. The Government then removed the Plaintiffs' case to this Court pursuant to the federal question doctrine. See 28 U.S.C. § 1331.

STANDARD

A motion for summary judgment must be granted "if the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 2552, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986); see also Herman v. National Broadcasting Co., Inc., 744 F.2d 604, 607 (7th Cir. 1984), cert. denied, 470 U.S. 1028 (1985). When determining whether factual issues exist, a "court must view all the evidence in the light most favorable to the non-moving party." See Black v. Henry Pratt Co., 778 F.2d 1278, 1281 (7th Cir. 1985).

However, "[s]ummary judgment is appropriately entered `against a party who fails to make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an element essential to that party's case, and on which that party will bear the burden of proof at trial.'" See McKenzie v. Illinois Department. of Transportation, 92 F.3d 473, 479 (7th Cir. 1996) (quoting Celotex, 477 U.S. at 322, 106 S.Ct. at 2552 (1986)).

To successfully oppose a motion for summary judgment, the nonmoving party must do more than raise a "metaphysical doubt" as to the material facts. See Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586, 106 S.Ct. 1348, 1355-56, 89 L.Ed.2d 538 (1986). Rather, he "must come forward with `specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.'" Id. at 587, 106 S.Ct. at 1356 (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e)). "Where the record taken as a ...


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