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America First Legal sues police for "illegally concealing" Nashville school shooter's manifesto

The organization claims that law enforcement violated the Public Records Act by denying access to these documents.

Vídeo de Audrey Elizabeth Hale, de 28 años, llevando a cabo un tiroteo en la escuela Covenant de Nashville.

(Metro Nashville Police Department)

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America First Legal filed a lawsuit on Thursday against the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County for violating the Public Records Act and withholding the manifesto of Nashville school shooter Audrey Hale.

America First Legal asked the court to allow it to inspect and copy "all written records and documents, including written manifestos, journals, written notes, memoirs, and school yearbooks" obtained by the Metro Nashville Police Department after searching Hale's home and automobile.

In the Circuit Court for Da... by Santiago Adolfo Ospital

Police back-and-forth

In the lawsuit, America First Legal explains that law enforcement reversed its decision to release these documents to the public.

They first denied a request by Michael Patrick Leahy, journalist and CEO of Star News Digital Media, for access to the manifesto on April 24, one month after the tragedy. Leahy, now a co-plaintiff, also requested access to the autopsy of the perpetrator of The Covenant School massacre.

On the grounds that there was an ongoing criminal investigation, both requests were denied. However, just three days later, the police department gave notice that it would make the documents public. The documents, according to officials, demonstrated the plans, state of mind and motives that would have led Hale to shoot children and teachers at the Christian school.

The police then changed their mind. In a tweet published six days later, Nashville P.D. maintained that its legal team had recommended suspending the disclosure of the information due to pending litigation. it explained that it was awaiting instructions from the court.

America First Legal argue that the police's argument that there is an ongoing criminal investigation is invalid because such an investigation does not exist. "America First Legal demands that the police department release the requested records immediately as required under the law," they wrote in the statement reporting the lawsuit.

The American people deserve transparency regarding this planned attack on innocent teachers and students by Audrey Hale.

The manifesto

Audrey Elizabeth Hale shot and killed three children and three adults on March 27. Hale was a transgender alumni of The Covenant School, where she chose to carry out the killing.

Within hours of the tragic event, Nashville Metro Police Chief John Drake reported that he had a number of documents explaining Hale's actions in his possession, including a map of the school with entry points. Drake also announced that there was a manifesto from the deceased attacker clarifying the motives for her actions.

Although law enforcement indicated that they would release these records and the requests made by public officials, such as Senator Tim Burchett, the content of the manifesto remains unknown.