A Carrollton attorney fed up that the city didn't hand over dash cam video of a traffic stop has now taken his case to federal court.
The federal lawsuit essentially accuses Carrollton of lying when the city initially said it did not have the technology to hand over the dash and body cam video of the traffic stop.
It was a simple traffic stop on North Josey Lane in Carrollton. The driver was cited for driving without a license and for not having insurance -- but wasn't sure why he was pulled over in the first place
Concerned he was racially profiled, he wanted the video of the stop to find out more. But when his attorney, Stephen Le Brocq, requested the video it turned into a costly legal battle.
“She stated I needed to bring my own recording device like an iPhone or a camcorder and record the computer screen,” said attorney Stephen Le Brocq. “I said I'm not doing that, because that is not what the law requires.”
Le Brocq said the law requires the city to produce a duplicate.
“Duplicate is an exact replica, like if you take your phone and record a movie and say that's a duplicate, it's not. It’s a video of a screen,” Le Brocq said.
Le Brocq said video of the screen would also be lacking important details.
“I wouldn't have any information imbedded, where the officer was, when the brakes were added, lights were activated all of that information is in imbedded which is why I wanted those original videos,” LeBrocq said.
Le Brocq said at one court hearing the city argued it did not have the technology to download the video. He later received an email that said the city did, now have that technology. Suspicious of the timing, he filed an open records request for invoices showing the technology upgrade. The city sent back a bill for $7,056.
“I don't believe it was a reasonable cost to pull 1 to 2 pdf files,” Le Brocq said.
The attorney has filed a complaint with the Texas attorney general about the records request.
"The City of Carrollton believes that, when the facts are presented to the court, this federal lawsuit will be dismissed,” the city said in a statement.
Le Brocq says he just hopes the case will help others.
"I'll spend whatever time and resources I need to make sure justice is done in Carrollton."