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Tracy Alan Barnett v. Davenport Police Department

IN THE COURT OF APPEALS OF IOWA


April 24, 2013

TRACY ALAN BARNETT, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
DAVENPORT POLICE DEPARTMENT, DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.

Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Mary E. Howes, Judge.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Vogle, P.J.

Plaintiff appeals the dismissal of his case. AFFIRMED.

Considered by Vogel, P.J., and Potterfield and Doyle, JJ.

Tracy Alan Barnett appeals the district court order denying his "Motion for Mandamus or Injunction to Enforce Production of Documents" and dismissing his case.*fn1 The district court found there is no basis in law for the Barnett's suit and it had no jurisdiction over matters sealed by order of the federal district court. We agree.

Barnett claims the information requested-the police report from his 2006 arrest-should not have been sealed by the federal district court because sealing was contrary to Iowa law as well as his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights.*fn2

Specifically he claims the report was released to a media outlet and therefore cannot be confidential and must be released to him based on the reasoning of Quad-City Community News Service, Inc. v. Jebens, 334 F. Supp. 8 (S.D. Iowa 1971). Iowa courts have no power to usurp a federal court seal, even if a claimant attempts to conjure up a claim involving state law. See Iowa Code § 602.5103 (2011) (detailing our jurisdiction). Had the federal district court erred in sealing the report, Barnett should have appealed that decision in federal court, not attempt to by-pass that process via our state courts. We therefore affirm the district court's order pursuant to Iowa Court Rule 21.29(1)(e).*fn3

AFFIRMED.


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