WSP Records: Documents Attached to “Suicide Letter Exemplars”

In late April of this year I submitted a records request to the Washington State Patrol for copies of the “worksheets” utilized by the Patrol to determine authorship of the greenhouse note discovered near Kurt Cobain’s body in April of 1994.

The worksheets consist of copies of the greenhouse note and a note reported to have been written by Mr. Cobain in Rome, Italy, approximately one month prior to his death (AKA the “Rome note”).  These worksheets contain the WSP’s forensic rationale and justification for concluding that Mr. Cobain was the author of the greenhouse note and have not been subject to public review.

The Patrol denied the request, citing the 1995 injunction restraining the Patrol from releasing the documents, as well as exemptions pertaining to privacy and the release of suicide notes.

An appeal was submitted to the agency with regard, in part, to whether the merits of the injunction, which was issued over twenty-years ago, are still sound and whether moving to dissolve the injunction may be prudent given questions bearing on the circumstances of Mr. Cobain’s death.

The Patrol’s review on appeal affirmed its initial determination to not produce the records.

The Patrol did, however, provide the documents it describes as being attached to the worksheets, which can be reviewed and downloaded below.  The Patrol in its response to the records request describes the below documents as “all the communication and paperwork related to the letter and the [judicial determination to bar] disclosure of documents…”

WSP Documents Attached to Exemplars (PDF)

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