PUBLIC INFORMATION -- The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that a former Chula Vista resident suing the city after he was choked unconscious by a police officer responding to a noise complaint during a late night party is also having to sue to get access to the complete police department policy on the use of such force.

A lawyer for 34-year-old Justin Ladou filed a $5 million claim against the city Monday, accusing the officer of violating Ladou's civil rights. On Dec. 10, the lawyer, Richard deSaulles, filed a related lawsuit in San Diego Superior Court against the city for refusing to turn over police documents that outline department policies on the use of force and other protocol.
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    In September, deSaulles requested a copy of Police Department policies on the use of force. The city released a heavily redacted version Nov. 26.
    In a Dec. 4 letter to deSaulles, Chula Vista Deputy City Attorney Chance Hawkins said the documents were redacted because the public's right to the information doesn't outweigh police confidentiality.
    Attorney Terry Francke, of the public-access advocacy group Californians Aware, said the public has a right to know when police are allowed to use force.
    “I think most people would agree that if the Police Department believes it's lawful to put a potentially lethal strangulation tool to use, then everyone should know what the rules are,” Francke said. “Obviously, it's going to be used in self-defense if there's a very violent altercation. But when do the police get to choke you because you're sassing them back?”