Prevent Sensitive Dash Cam Footage From Randy Travis' 2012 Arrest From Becoming Public
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The Texas Attorney General’s Office is refusing to follow a state court order from Randy Travis’ 2012 DUI case with threats to release the police dash cam video five years after the incident occurred, even though the case is still under appeal in the federal court system. The video, which contains confidential and sensitive footage, was taken after Mr. Travis had suffered a serious concussion as well as various other physical injuries due to the car crash. Randy’s wife Mary Davis-Travis has been his primary caretaker since he suffered a massive stroke in 2013 and serves as his “next friend” in court proceedings. Mary, along with his manager Tony Conway and publicist Zach Farnum, has issued a petition to protest the Texas Attorney General’s unfair threat and urges Randy’s friends and fans to take action.
Martin J. Cirkiel, Mr. Travis’ attorney stated that “When this case started it was only about Randy Travis but now it has evolved into a case protecting the privacy rights of every American who happens to have a video taken of them when in the midst of a medical emergency or mental health breakdown and wants to make sure those private moments, remain just that- private.”
In regard to the case itself, Cirkiel noted that “The State Court Judge originally issued an order that the tape and other sensitive information should be released but qualified that ruling by sensibly ordering it to remain private pending the full exhaustion of Randy’s rights to appeal that decision. The Texas Court of Appeals and Supreme Court affirmed the State Judge decision but Randy has now appealed the case to federal court system, as is his right. We are merely asking the Attorneys representing the State of Texas follow the State Court Judge’s Order to keep the video private, as the case is appealed through the federal system. They have refused to do so and threaten to release it this Friday by 5:00pm.”
“Additionally, the reason the tape is at issue at all is because the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) got to the scene of the accident where Randy suffered a concussion before the arrival Emergency Medical Services. If EMS had gotten their first, it all would have remained confidential under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). We argued that whether or not a video depiction of a person’s decompensated medical and mental condition should be public or private, should not turn on which government official gets there first. The State Courts refused to look at this issue as well. We believe the federal court system will.”
“We also argued that Randy’s current medical condition and mental status precluded any public interest from a time years past, when he was healthy and working as a public figure. In short, it would be absolutely unfair to release the tape as by the nature of his stroke, Randy has no present ability to comment on the tape or defend himself if necessary.”
Now Randy’s case is in the federal system where his attorneys have again argued constitutional claims as well as arguments that the Texas Open Records Laws as written and as applied, discriminated on the basis of disability under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
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