City of Kirkland v. Sheehan, No. 01-2-09513-7 SEA, 2001 WL 1751590 (Wash. Super. filed 2001).
Status: Injunction mostly denied.

City officials of Kirkland, Wash. sued William Sheehan seeking an injunction against his website,, which posted the names, Social Security numbers, and other personal information of police officers and their relatives. Sheehan offered to remove the listings only if police agencies verified the names of their employees, and set up civilian complaint review boards.

The court granted the injunction only as to the Social Security numbers. It declined to issue an injunction against posting the other information, holding that "In this case, as in numerous others, in the absence of a credible specific threat of harm, the publication of lawfully obtained addresses and telephone numbers, while certainly unwelcome to those who had desired a greater degree of anonymity, is traditionally viewed as having the ability to promote political speech."

The Washington legislature then passed Chapter 336 of the Washington Laws of 2002, which would have created a cause of action for declaratory and injunctive relief, and monetary damages, for any person who “with the intent to harm or intimidate” identifies and releases certain information about law enforcement or court-related employees or volunteers. Sheehan sued, resulting in a summary judgment ruling that the statute was unconstitutional. Sheehan v. Gregoire, Civil No. 02-1112, 272 F. Supp. 2d 1135 (W.D. Wash. summary judgment May 22, 2003).

Links and Court Documents:

Decision denying injunction:

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