The Attorney General's Office ruled the Scott County Sheriff's Office had violated the Open Records Act.
The opinion states that the sheriff's office "violated the Open Records Act when it failed to carry its burden that it charged a reasonable copying fee for records."
According to the decision, Glen Davis submitted a request to the sheriff's office to "obtain copies of all records associated with his arrest in 2013." The sheriff's office gave him the 10-page record.
In his initial appeal, Davis claims he should have received more than 10 pages and that he paid $20 in advance for copying costs. The sheriff's office kept the full amount, and Davis requested a refund.
The Attorney General's Office was "unable to determine whether the Department should have produced additional records."
However, the Attorney General's Office was able to determined the office charged an "excessive copying fee." While public agencies are allowed to request a copying fee, which the the decision states is approximately 10 centers per page, they should "not exceed the actual cost of reproduction." Agencies may charge more if they can substantiate the additional costs.
The decision states the sheriff's office cashed the $20 check, but failed to refund the balance to Davis.
"In that case, the Department has effectively charged $2 per page - 20 times what is considered a reasonable fee," according to the Attorney General's decision.
However, the decision also states the Attorney General cannot order the sheriff's office to refund Davis his remaining balance and may issue an appeal of the decision in circuit court.