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Feb 23, 2010 4:28 PM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

States eye ban on public release of 911 calls

Several states are considering measures that would keep 911 recordings from being heard by the public.

The measures come as a response to complaints that broadcasting such calls violates people's privacy and exposes them at their most vulnerable moments.

Lawmakers in Alabama, Ohio and Wisconsin are deciding whether to bar the public release of 911 calls.

Open-government advocates say a ban would take away a valuable tool that has exposed botched calls and helped solve crimes. Missouri, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Wyoming already keep such recordings private.

But generally, most states consider emergency calls public records available on request, with exceptions sometimes made for privacy reasons or to protect a police investigation.

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