HB 1061

84(R) - 2015
House Criminal Jurisprudence
House Criminal Jurisprudence
Criminal Justice
Law Enforcement

Vote Recommendation

Vote No; Amend
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Negative


Chris Turner


Abel Herrero

Bill Caption

Relating to the prosecution of the offense of interference with public duties.

Fiscal Notes

No significant fiscal implication to the state or local government is anticipated.

Bill Analysis

HB 1061 would write into statute that it a rebuttable presumption that an offense has occurred if an actor intentionally disseminates an officer’s personal, private, or confidential information. A rebuttable presumption means that it is an assumption of fact unless the court is able to disprove the assumption. This would mean that any information disseminated that is considered personal, private, or confidential may warrant a Class B misdemeanor.

Vote Recommendation Notes

HB 1061 is overly broad. If an actor filmed an officer and their badge number was visible, the actor could be subject to be charged for this offense. If a media outlet with a penchant for "data journalism" decides to list every police officers’ salary in the state of Texas, its publisher and employees could also be subject to charges under this offense.

This bill goes against our individual liberty principle because it is a most restrictive way to address the problem associated with keeping police officer’s personal information private. There is also already an offense to possess identifying information under Sec. 32.51 of the Penal Code. So we oppose this House bill in the form sent to the floor.

However, it must also be said that limiting the scope of what could be considered personal, private, or confidential information would preserve both the public and officer's Individual Liberty. An amendment which addresses the specifics of what is "personal," "private," or "confidential" should rectify our concerns with this bill.

Organizations Supporting

Houston Police Department
Texas Municipal League
Texas Municipal Police Association