SAO FOIA: Their Data Dictionary

Data Dictionary This FOIA request targets the data dictionary from the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office as part of our ongoing advocacy to open their data.

As part of our litigation settlement the SAO did provide us with partial data for 7 years of felony case level prosecution data including data on their secretive felony review practices.  But they never provided us with their data dictionary so that we could interpret all the data produced.

This is why we have filed the FOIA request that is detailed below.

In accordance with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, 5 ILCS 140, I request that your office provide the following public records: 

1. The Crimes Database system Data Dictionary(ies).

2. All Data Dictionary(ies) for any Case Management System currently being used by or under the control of the CCSAO for felony prosecutions.

3.  Documents sufficient to explain, detail or describe the contents of the table and any and all field(s) present in the Crimes Database system.

4. Any training or instructional materials for the Crimes Database system which are used to educate or train individuals on how to input, maintain, archive, or upkeep the Crimes Database system. 

5. Any training or instructional materials for the Case Management System currently being used for any and all felony prosecutions in Cook County.

6.  Documents sufficient to explain, detail or describe the contents of the table and any and all field(s) present in any Case Management System currently being used by or under the control of the CCSAO for felony prosecutions by CCSAO.

7.  Documents sufficient to explain, detail or describe the contents of the field(s) present in any Case Management System, identified in the attached Exhibit A.

DEFINITIONS
“Case Management System” means and refers to software (or any other electronic system or database) used to manage the life cycle of a case and organize case information.

“CCSAO” means and refers to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office.

“Crimes Database” means and refers to system used to store felony prosecution data, including but not limited to the data produced by CCSAO to Chicago Justice Project in connection with Chicago Justice Project v. Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, Case No. 15 CH 18147.

“Data Dictionary” means and refers to any set of information describing the contents, format, and structure of a database and the relationship between its elements, used to control access to and manipulation of the database.

The term “table” means and refers to a set of data elements using a model of vertical columns and horizontal rows, the cell being the unit where a row and column intersect.

The term “field” means and refers to the basic unit of data entry in a database

INSTRUCTIONS
If the agency believes they are going to withhold any document or information pertinent to the requests made herein, please identify the document or information in as much detail as is possible and detail in specific language why each document or piece of information is being withheld.

If any information requested herein is withheld on the basis of a claim of privilege or subject to protection as material prepared in anticipation of litigation or trial, then that claim shall be made expressly in a writing that describes the nature of the Documents, Communications, or Things not produced or disclosed in a manner that will enable us to assess the applicability of the privilege or protection. With regard to each claim of privilege or protection, the following information should be provided in the response or the objection:

(a) the type of Document, e.g., letter or memorandum;

(b) general subject matter of the Document;

(c) the date of the Document; and

(d) such other information as is sufficient to identify the Document for a subpoena duces tecum, including, where appropriate, the author, addressee, and any other recipient of the Document, and, where not apparent, the relationship of the author, addressee, and any other recipient to each other.

If any Document or Thing identified herein has been lost, discarded, or destroyed, each such Document or Thing should be identified as completely as possible, including as to each such Document or Thing, its date, general nature (e.g., letter, memorandum, telegram, telex, photograph, computer printout), subject matter, each author or originator, each person indicated as an addressee or copy recipient, and its former custodian(s). In addition, as to each such Document or Thing, the following information shall be supplied:

(a) date of disposal, loss, or destruction;

(b) manner of disposal, loss, or destruction;

(c) reason for disposal or destruction, or any explanation of loss;

(d) persons authorizing the disposal or destruction;

(e) persons having knowledge of the disposal, destruction, or loss; and

(f) persons who destroyed, lost, or disposed or the Document or Thing.

I look forward to hearing from you in writing within five working days, as required by the Act 5 ILCS 140(3).  Please direct all questions or responses to this FOIA request to this email address by responding to this email. 

EXHIBIT A

  • Table L_COURT: COURT TYPE_ID Number
  • Table L_FACILITY: FACILITY AREA_ID Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ADDL_INFO: DL_STATE_ID Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ADDL_INFO: CUSTODY STATUS ID Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ADDL_INFO: GANG_TYPE_ID Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ADDL_INFO: CITIZENSHIP_STATUS Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ADDL_INFO: PROPERTY_LOSS_TYPE Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ADDL_INFO: SKIN_TYPE_ID Number
  • Table T_PERSON_ENTITY_INFO: ENTITY_TYPE_ID Number
  • Table L_OFFICER: TITLE_ID Number
  • Table T_ADDR: CITY_ID Number
  • Table T_ADDR: COUNTY_ID Number
  • Table T_CASE_PARTICIPANT: CASE_PARTICIPANT_ROLE_ID Nubmer
  • Table T_CASE_PARTICIPANT: PARTICIPANT_STATUS ID Number
  • Table T_ARREST_INFO: ARREST REASON ID Number
  • Table T_ARREST_INFO: IDENTITY_METHOD_ID Number
  • Table T_ARREST_INFO: INITIAL_CUSTODY_STATUS_ID Number
  • Table T_CASE_DETAIL: CASE_DETAIL_TYPE_ID Number
  •  Table T_CASE_DETAIL: EVENT RESULT ID Number
  • Table T_CASE: CASE TYPE ID Number
  • Table T_CASE: CASE_SUBTYPE_ID Number
  • Table T_CASE: OFFENSE TYPE ID Number
  • Table T_CASE: CASE_STATUS_ID Number
  • Table T_CASE: CLOSE REASON ID Number
  • Table T_CASE: CLOSE_SUB_REASON ID Number

Author: Tracy Siska

Tracy Siska is the Founder and Executive Director of the Chicago Justice Project.

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