Albemarle Commonwealth’s Attorney Lunsford sued over FOIA


As first reported on today’s edition of The Schilling Show on WINA, embattled Commonwealth’s Attorney, Denise Lunsford, has been sued over violations of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act.

Richmond-based Attorney, Matthew Hardin, who previously had sought expense, reimbursement, and correspondence-related documents from Ms. Lunsford, was rebuffed when the Commonwealth’s Attorney insisted on prepayment of $3,199 and requested five weeks to complete the request. In addition, Lunsford insisted that she alone was qualified to procure the documents sought.

Hardin characterized Lunsford’s defiance as follows:

Rather than work to provide records as the law requires, Denise Lunsford, the Commonwealth Attorney, demanded fees of almost $3200 before her office would even begin looking for records. Ms. Lunsford also insisted that her office would take over five weeks to release any documents, even though the law calls for a response within five working days. Ms. Lunsford has also insisted on redacting the responsive documents herself as opposed to a “disinterested third-party” gathering and reviewing the documents for release.

Hardin further claimed that Lunsford’s grossly inflated compliance fees, “act as a barrier to transparency,” and are a form of “extortion.”

Complete court documents for the case, Pieron v. Commonwealth of Virginia and Denise Lunsford, can be found here.

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