Evans v. CIA, No. 11-02544, 2014 WL 4357470 (D. Colo. Sept. 2, 2014) (Krieger, C.J.)

Date: 
Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Evans v. CIA, No. 11-02544, 2014 WL 4357470 (D. Colo. Sept. 2, 2014) (Krieger, C.J.)

Re: Request for photograph of Osama Bin Laden's deceased body

Disposition: Granting defendant's motion for summary judgment

  • Exemption 1:  The court holds that "to the extent necessary, the Court fully adopts the reasoning of both Judicial Watch opinions [concerning this same issue (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Dept. of Defense, 857 F.Supp.2d 44 (D.D.C. 2012) and Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Dept. of Defense, 715 F.3d 937 (D.C. Cir. 2013)]."  "The sole question presented here is whether [then CIA Director Leon] Panetta's predictions about future public access to the photographs, made in a television interview three days after the Abottabad raid, somehow creates a genuine dispute of fact as to an essential element of a challenge to an agency's invocation of FOIA Exemption 1."  The court notes that "[a]s the Judicial Watch opinions note, the CIA need only show that the photographs were properly classified—that is, that the procedural requirements for classification were met and that disclosure of the records could reasonably be expected to cause grave damage to national security."  The court finds that "Mr. Panetta's comments do not bear on those questions."
Topic: 
District Court
Exemption 1
Updated January 29, 2015