Massachusetts SWAT Teams Tell ACLU They Are Private Corporations, Exempt From Public Records Law
The American Civil Liberties Union hit an interesting snag while trying to put together a nation-wide report on SWAT team usage. The Washington Post reports that the ACLU's Massachusetts chapter sent a number of public records requests to various SWAT teams across the state, many of which are run by regional law enforcement councils, and several of those councils responded that they are private corporations and therefore exempt from the public records law. Many of the law enforcement councils, to which local police departments pay dues, operate as 501c3 organizations, which are typically considered exempt. The ACLU was requesting information about how often SWAT teams are used, what they are used for, what kind of training they get and what type of criminals they are used against.