Texas Attorney General Opinion: GA-1002 Page: 3 of 4
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The Honorable Joe Shannon, Jr. - Page 3
control over them. See., e.g., Tex. Att'y Gen. Op. Nos. JM-1275 (1990) at 4--5, WW-154 (1957)
at 2. Nor, however, may a county officer unreasonably withhold access to those records. See,
e.g., Tex. Att'y Gen. Op. Nos. JM-1275 (1990) at 5, WW-154 (1957) at 2.
A court would likely conclude that sections 112.006 and 115.001 authorize a county
auditor to access inmates' property in order to investigate the correctness of the property
receipts, subject to the sheriff's reasonable cond'Itions on that access.2
2Briefing received by this office urges us to consider the potential constitutional implications of an
auditor's access to inmate property in the possession of a sheriff. See Brief from Mr. Scott Medlock, Prisoner's
Rights Program Dir., Tex. Civil Rights Project at 1-3 (Dec. 11, 2012). We cannot determine here whether any
particular incident involving inmate property may implicate an inmate's constitutional rights, and we express no
opinion on the extent of an inmate's constitutionally protected interest in property turned over to the sheriff. To the
extent such constitutional interests exist, a sheriff's reasonable exercise of discretion to withhold an auditor's access
to records would enable the sheriff to ensure those interests are protected.
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Texas. Attorney-General's Office. Texas Attorney General Opinion: GA-1002, text, April 29, 2013; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth1050919/m1/3/: accessed December 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.