Requesting Electronic Data From Law Enforcement Agencies (Leave With Completed Request)

Saturday, July 30 at 2 PM – 4:30 PM
1201 Martin Luther King Jr Way, at 12th St., Oakland. Close Walk to 12th St. Bart. Accessible building.

  • 2-2:15 Lecture.
    • Background information on the Freedom of Information and Privacy acts. I recommend you read the materials or watch videos here before
  • 2:30-3:00 Lecture
    • Focus on what electronic data is considered a federal “Agency Record” eligible for release under FOIA. Discussion of databases, software, source code, photographs, screenshots, research, etc.
  • 3:00-3:15 Lecture
    • Exemptions and exclusions pertinent to law enforcement.
  • 3:15-4:30 Drafting
    • Participants will be walked step by step through typing their requests on their own computers.


  • You can write a request to the FBI for records about collaboration with local law enforcement during a protest.
  • You could write about surveillance of #BlackLivesMatter
  • You could request camera footage (example of state records act here, not federal)


  • Research your topic in advance. Visit to understand what kind of research to do and documents to bring.
  • Bring a laptop.
  • $25-50 sliding scale. Free if your request relates to #BlackLivesMatter
  • Space is limited so participants must register. Register here Please include questions you would like me to answer, and topics you would like me to address.

Link to share

This workshop will not cover state/local Public Records Act requests. Please email me if you are interested in a workshop on that.

Accessible ramp entrance is in back of building.