It has been six weeks since we have had any Jail recordings concerning the Haleigh Cummings case. I touched base with the PIO for the St Johns jail today, and I was quite surprised by the conversation. I was merely asking what the schedule was for the release of more tapes.
He pointed out that there were no videos available, both Hank and Lisa are bound by their probation terms to stay within Putnam County. I countered with, ‘but there audio tapes’, these people do talk in the phone.
Yes there are recordings, and yes, they can be released.
Then came the zinger. Apparently BNN is the only news organization to ask for this information. As such we would have to pay for the manpower to create the CD’s. He went on to explain that in the past there had been 15-20 organizations interested, and so they had been able to share the manpower cost between the news organizations at the rate of $5 per DVD.
So folks, if you want to hear the latest audio tapes you are going to have to help us. No, we are not asking for money! We just need other news organizations to start asking for the tapes. If we can achieve that I am sure that the information will be made available at an equitable price.
I for one would love to hear the conversations between Misty and her family. I am also sure that there are some more very terse conversations between Tommy Croslin and his wife.
Toby Keith in his song American Soldier says ‘Freedom don’t come free’, this also applies to the Sunshine Law, Freedom Of Information has a price tag. I have a great deal of empathy with the Law Enforcement people, and realize that the LE dollar has to be stretched. I would rather that dollar be spent on solving the Haleigh Cummings case than fighting with CD’s on my behalf. The major issue is not creating the CD’s, but each conversation must be listened to, and redacted if required.
So folks, that is the story on the latest set of tapes.
I for one am somewhat surprised that BNN is the only organization interested in the information. But, as is so often the situation when covering news items, new cases take precedence over older ones.
It is possible that the interest level in the Haleigh Cummings case will gain some traction next week. There is a court appearance on July/6 that might just get some pens hitting the paper.
We will keep you informed of developments.
Simon and Jan Barrett