The ACLU-NH and Union Leader Corporation moved to intervene and filed a legal brief in this public records case on October 22, 2020.  Here, the ACLU-NH and Union Leader are seeking disciplinary records concerning the actions of former Claremont police officer Jonathan Stone that led to his termination, and the personnel records of Mr. Stone concerning 11 internal affairs investigations with sustained findings.  Here, the public interest in disclosure is both compelling and obvious.  The requested records depict sustained misconduct performed by an officer relating to that officer’s official duties.  This alone justifies disclosure. This compelling public interest in disclosure is further enhanced by the fact that Mr. Stone is a current City councilor in Claremont and is running for election to the New Hampshire House of Representatives to represent District 10 in Sullivan County.  The public has a right to know this information as they go to the polls on November 3, 2020.  Moreover, the records would help the public evaluate how the City supervised, investigated, and disciplined Mr. Stone, as well as learn why the City agreed to keep any misconduct secret.  In short, in this historic moment of conversation about police accountability nationally and here in New Hampshire, government agencies should take the position of accountability, not secrecy, concerning one of its officers who engaged in wrongdoing. 

Attorney(s)

Gilles Bissonnette, ACLU-NH Legal Director, Henry Klementowicz, ACLU-NH Staff Attorney

Date filed

October 22, 2020

Court

Sullivan County Superior Court

Status

Pending

Case number

220-2020-CV-00143