A newspaper filed suit Monday to force access to selected arrest reports of people who complained of brutality by Santa Ana police.
Freedom Newspapers Inc., publisher of the Orange County Register, asserts that police are improperly refusing to disclose 107 reports of arrests made between 1983 and the present.
The City of Santa Ana opposed the request for a court order Monday. City Atty. Edward J. Cooper said release of information in the manner sought by the newspaper would be a misdemeanor under state law.
Register lawyer Mark D. Wray characterized Cooper's position as "absurd."
"They won't give us what they know, and what they admit is a public record," Wray said. "It's pretty absurd."
The records sought are arrest reports of 107 persons "who have filed complaints against the police for brutality in the last several years," Wray said.