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Thread: FOIA Request - Follow up to Sterile Open Carry at Norfolk City Hall

  1. #1
    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    I posted that I was working on a FOIArequestfor the behavior of the security guards atNorfolk City Hall on 07 October. Here is the request:



    15 October 2008

    From:XXXXXXXXXXX

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXX

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXX



    To: Regina V.K. Williams, Norfolk City Manager

    Office of the City Manager

    1101 City Hall Building

    810 Union Street

    Norfolk, VA 23510



    Subject: Freedom of Information Act Request



    1. On the evening of 07 October 2008 I tried to attend the Norfolk City Council meeting held at the City Hall Building and scheduled to begin at 1930.



    2. When I entered the building the security guard asked for my identification. I informed her that I did not have any ID for her. She asked really? And I answered really. She then ordered me to stand beside the desk and forbade my further entry past the lobby or my exit from the building. She then ordered the other security guard to call the police. I was illegally seized and detained by the security guard for approximately five minutes.



    3. In order to support my Felony Abduction complaint to the Commonwealth’s Attorney and my Federal Civil Rights Complaint I request a copy of the following documents be provided in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act:



    • The roster of security guards working at The City Hall Building on the evening of 07 October 2008.
    • The sign in sheets that the security guards asked people to sign upon entry on 07 October 2008.
    • The written policy, procedures, practices, plans or guidance of the City of Norfolk, VA, or any agency, department or unit of the city pertaining to the identification, intimidation or detainment of citizens by security guards and the written instructions or manual directing security guards to compel or demand identification and the signing of a roster in order to gain admittance to a public meeting. .
    • Any e-mail by Norfolk City Employees, contractors, contract employees or consultants interpreting, advising or pertaining to the City Hall identification procedures or security log use, to include practices, policies, guidance or plans used by the City of Norfolk for City Hall.
    • An audio recording of any emergency or non emergency telephone call to the dispatchers from city hall on the evening of 07October 2008 between the hours of 1830 and 2030.
    • The Police Roll Call rosters indicating the Police Officers assigned to City hall an/or the City Council meeting on 07October 2008.
    • Any other documents showing the names an/or badge numbers of Police Officers assigned to City Hall an/or the City Council Meeting on the evening of 07 October 2008.
    • The Norfolk police dispatcher incident log from 1800 – 2200 on 07 October 2008.
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

    The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us....There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! ...The war is inevitableand let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come . PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    Ask for the information in digital format rather than in printed copy. It'll save you potentially thousands of dollars as they can charge you for the copy costs.

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Thundar wrote:
    3. In order to support my Felony Abduction complaint to the Commonwealth’s Attorney ........


    You are going to seek a warrant for abduction?
    James Reynolds

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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    ProShooter wrote:
    Thundar wrote:
    3. In order to support my Felony Abduction complaint to the Commonwealth’s Attorney ........


    You are going to seek a warrant for abduction?
    Yes.

    Relevant code:

    § 18.2-47. Abduction and kidnapping defined; punishment.

    A. Any person, who, by force, intimidation or deception, and without legal justification or excuse, seizes, takes, transports, detains or secretes the person of another, with the intent to deprive such other person of his personal liberty or to withhold or conceal him from any person, authority or institution lawfully entitled to his charge, shall be deemed guilty of "abduction"; but the provisions of this section shall not apply to any law-enforcement officer in the performance of his duty. The terms "abduction" and "kidnapping" shall be synonymous in this Code. Abduction for which no punishment is otherwise prescribed shall be punished as a Class 5 felony.

    Link: http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp...00+cod+18.2-47
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

    The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us....There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! ...The war is inevitableand let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come . PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Thundar wrote:
    ProShooter wrote:
    Thundar wrote:
    3. In order to support my Felony Abduction complaint to the Commonwealth’s Attorney ........


    You are going to seek a warrant for abduction?
    Yes.

    Relevant code:

    § 18.2-47. Abduction and kidnapping defined; punishment.

    A. Any person, who, by force, intimidation or deception, and without legal justification or excuse, seizes, takes, transports, detains or secretes the person of another, with the intent to deprive such other person of his personal liberty or to withhold or conceal him from any person, authority or institution lawfully entitled to his charge, shall be deemed guilty of "abduction"; but the provisions of this section shall not apply to any law-enforcement officer in the performance of his duty. The terms "abduction" and "kidnapping" shall be synonymous in this Code. Abduction for which no punishment is otherwise prescribed shall be punished as a Class 5 felony.

    Link: http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp...00+cod+18.2-47
    oh I'm quite familar with the Code.
    James Reynolds

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    Regular Member ODA 226's Avatar
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    Thundar,

    Why haven't you gone to the magistrate yet or have you? I don't think this will go anywhere and could be counter-productive. At best you were illegally detained and not much else.
    Bitka Sve Reava!
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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    Magistrates office will not take action unless I have a name and address, thus the FOIA request to find the name.

    Illegal detention by other than a LEO meets the felony definition of abduction in the VA Code.
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

    The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us....There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! ...The war is inevitableand let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come . PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    Lone Star Veteran DrMark's Avatar
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    Instead of paragraphs 1, 2, and 3, why not just state "In accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request a copy of the following documents" followed by your bulleted list.

    What benefit is there to airing the issue to Ms. Williams?





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    Thundar wrote:
    I posted that I was working on a FOIArequestfor the behavior of the security guards atNorfolk City Hall on 07 October. Here is the request:



    15 October 2008

    From:XXXXXXXXXXX

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXX

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXX



    To: Regina V.K. Williams, Norfolk City Manager

    Office of the City Manager

    1101 City Hall Building

    810 Union Street

    Norfolk, VA 23510



    Subject: Freedom of Information Act Request



    1. On the evening of 07 October 2008 I tried to attend the Norfolk City Council meeting held at the City Hall Building and scheduled to begin at 1930.



    2. When I entered the building the security guard asked for my identification. I informed her that I did not have any ID for her. She asked really? And I answered really. She then ordered me to stand beside the desk and forbade my further entry past the lobby or my exit from the building. She then ordered the other security guard to call the police. I was illegally seized and detained by the security guard for approximately five minutes.



    3. In order to support my Felony Abduction complaint to the Commonwealth’s Attorney and my Federal Civil Rights Complaint I request a copy of the following documents be provided in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act:



    • The roster of security guards working at The City Hall Building on the evening of 07 October 2008.
    • The sign in sheets that the security guards asked people to sign upon entry on 07 October 2008.
    • The written policy, procedures, practices, plans or guidance of the City of Norfolk, VA, or any agency, department or unit of the city pertaining to the identification, intimidation or detainment of citizens by security guards and the written instructions or manual directing security guards to compel or demand identification and the signing of a roster in order to gain admittance to a public meeting. .
    • Any e-mail by Norfolk City Employees, contractors, contract employees or consultants interpreting, advising or pertaining to the City Hall identification procedures or security log use, to include practices, policies, guidance or plans used by the City of Norfolk for City Hall.
    • An audio recording of any emergency or non emergency telephone call to the dispatchers from city hall on the evening of 07October 2008 between the hours of 1830 and 2030.
    • The Police Roll Call rosters indicating the Police Officers assigned to City hall an/or the City Council meeting on 07October 2008.
    • Any other documents showing the names an/or badge numbers of Police Officers assigned to City Hall an/or the City Council Meeting on the evening of 07 October 2008.
    • The Norfolk police dispatcher incident log from 1800 – 2200 on 07 October 2008.
    Was this ever submitted? If so, any response?

  10. #10
    Newbie W.E.G.'s Avatar
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    +1 on the abduction charge not happening

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    ODA 226 wrote:
    Thundar,

    Why haven't you gone to the magistrate yet or have you? I don't think this will go anywhere and could be counter-productive. At best you were illegally detained and not much else.
    Agreed, seeking a warrant is ignorant and will make you look like a fool. You could have just walked away and were not even truly detained.

    Did you ask, " I'mI being detained ? "

    I'm all for asserting our rights and question their right to demand ID to enter the building, but you are being a bit sillyin seeking awarrant .

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    no carry permit ? wrote:
    ODA 226 wrote:
    Thundar,

    Why haven't you gone to the magistrate yet or have you? I don't think this will go anywhere and could be counter-productive. At best you were illegally detained and not much else.
    Agreed, seeking a warrant is ignorant and will make you look like a fool. You could have just walked away and were not even truly detained.

    Did you ask, " I'mI being detained ? "

    I'm all for asserting our rights and question their right to demand ID to enter the building, but you are being a bit sillyin seeking awarrant .
    +1
    James Reynolds

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    Regular Member MeBaby's Avatar
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    Come on people, practice your reading skills . He stated that he was told to step aside and not leave.

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    False Arrest?

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    He could have just walked out. Security guards are NOT sworn law enforcement officers in Virginia and can't legally detain you. They can only make a citizens arrest in Virginia for a felony that they have witnessed. Does this get ignored by uneducated, poorly trained security guards ? You bet. Was he arrested ? Nope. Will anything come of his effort to prosecute ? NO.

    Some of you guys are always barking up the wrong tree, so quick to "fight for your rights" (which is great ! ) but we need to pick are battles strategically. Positioning the open carry movement as a group that is walking around with a chip on their shoulder, always looking for a fight is counter productive to our cause. If you want to fight your localgovernment's ID checking go file a lawsuit to fight it. Try suing the security company, but seeking an arrest warrant on this is ignorant.



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    Regular Member razor_baghdad's Avatar
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    You might forward some of that paperwork to Dan should you receive it.

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    no carry permit ? wrote:
    He could have just walked out. Security guards are NOT sworn law enforcement officers in Virginia and can't legally detain you. They can only make a citizens arrest in Virginia for a felony that they have witnessed. Does this get ignored by uneducated, poorly trained security guards ? You bet. Was he arrested ? Nope. Will anything come of his effort to prosecute ? NO.

    Some of you guys are always barking up the wrong tree, so quick to "fight for your rights" (which is great ! ) but we need to pick are battles strategically. Positioning the open carry movement as a group that is walking around with a chip on their shoulder, always looking for a fight is counter productive to our cause. If you want to fight your localgovernment's ID checking go file a lawsuit to fight it. Try suing the security company, but seeking an arrest warrant on this is ignorant.

    +1 This is the most intelligent reply I've read yet.
    James Reynolds

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    ProShooter wrote:
    no carry permit ? wrote:
    He could have just walked out. Security guards are NOT sworn law enforcement officers in Virginia and can't legally detain you. They can only make a citizens arrest in Virginia for a felony that they have witnessed. Does this get ignored by uneducated, poorly trained security guards ? You bet. Was he arrested ? Nope. Will anything come of his effort to prosecute ? NO.

    Some of you guys are always barking up the wrong tree, so quick to "fight for your rights" (which is great ! ) but we need to pick are battles strategically. Positioning the open carry movement as a group that is walking around with a chip on their shoulder, always looking for a fight is counter productive to our cause. If you want to fight your localgovernment's ID checking go file a lawsuit to fight it. Try suing the security company, but seeking an arrest warrant on this is ignorant.
    +1 This is the most intelligent reply I've read yet.
    Agreed!

    Thundar... Why did you not call the police and report this "felony" immediately so that they could identify the guard and look for any witnesses?

    Why are you trying to investigate a felony case on your own?

    Why does your FOIA contain details on the incident? Is it needed to justifywhy you want it before they will release the information?

    Why do you need all the information you requestedif you are looking to obtain a felony warrant? How do you hope to make a case with emails, dispatch logs, badge numbers, sign in rosters? It has nothing to do with the act itself.

    You posted your event and some members mayagree with you that there was a crime committed. This is what they call "The blind leading the blind."

    Permit me to give you my OPINION on the matter.

    You simply have no case here.

    You know very well that a security guard has no lawful authority to make you do anything. Their job is basicallyto monitor the activity and call the police and report crimes. In your own post you advised that she said to "call the police".

    "She then ordered me to stand beside the desk and forbade my further entry past the lobby or my exit from the building."

    In the above quote you identified


    • She "ordered" you to stand behind a desk.
    • She forbid you further entry
    • She [prevented] you from exiting the building
    Did you try to walk out?

    The security guard carries no more weight than astrangeron the street walking up and telling you toto stay where you are so he can call the police. Even if he was 6'5" and 220 pounds..As intimidating as a strangermight be....thereis no abduction.



    § 18.2-47. Abduction and kidnapping defined; punishment.

    A. Any person, who, by



    • force, (She used no physical force, right?)
    • intimidation or (How did she intimidate you? You had a gun!!)
    • deception, (She was not deceiving you.)
    and without

    • legal justification or
    • excuse, (She has a good excuse to "tell" you to stay.)
    [The act]

    • seizes, (Unless she grabbed you... you were not seized.)
    • takes,
    • transports,
    • detains or (Did you try to leave?)
    • secretes
    the person of another,

    with the intent to

    • deprive such other person of his personal liberty or
    • to withhold or conceal him from
      • any person,
      • authority or
      • institution lawfully entitled to his charge,
    shall be deemed guilty of "abduction";

    but the provisions of this section shall not apply to any law-enforcement officer in the performance of his duty.

    The terms "abduction" and "kidnapping" shall be synonymous in this Code. Abduction for which no punishment is otherwise prescribed shall be punished as a Class 5 felony.

    Looks to me like you do not really have much of a case.

    To obtain a warrant you will need more information like name, DOB, SSN, OL number, home address. I doubt your FOIA is going to get that for you.

    And when you go to see the Magistrate and request your warrant... he or she will probably deny your request because an officer is normally needed for felony cases.

    But best of luck with your case... seems like a waste of time to me.

  19. #19
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    The request for existing records looks fine - not sure why any criminal charge would arise from the employees barring your entry temporarily. But getting the records can help you follow up to make sure the guards get re-trained that ID cannot be required to attend public meetings.

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    Mike wrote:
    The request for existing records looks fine - not sure why any criminal charge would arise from the employees barring your entry temporarily. But getting the records can help you follow up to make sure the guards get re-trained that ID cannot be required to attend public meetings.
    Why are we hanging ID card checks on the guards and suggesting they be retrained? These guys get paid $7.00 an hour to do what they are told. You should take up such a matters with their employer.

    Since the entry log was requested by Thundarin his FOIA... I suspect the guards were told to maintain a log andwere following orders when theywere checking ID cards. Guards do not normally take such measures on their own.

    I do not think Thundar's allegation was his being prevented from going inside. It was about being told to standin front of a deskand "ordered" not to leave.



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    I wasn't present but from the circumstances described, I don't think it meets the statutory definition of abduction.

    MAYBE - you could have made a case for - http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp...0+cod+18.2-404but it requires a LEO.
    when you go to see the Magistrate and request your warrant... he or she will probably deny your request because an officer is normally needed for felony cases.
    I'm curious about this. I only have one experiece with it and I did get initial resistance from the magistrate who indicated "only police can get a felony warrant". That's untrue, but I'm not aware of a legal means of coercing their cooperation.

    At least the last 3 or 4 years legislation has been introduced by various assembly members to statutorily restrict the issuance of felony warrants to polices, C.A.'s and a few others. Fortunately it's been beaten back.

    What are the magistrates afraid of, do they have something against citizens?


    Fortunately, I'd already talked to a very nice and helpful FCPD guy who was able to lend a quick assist.



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    Mr. Y wrote:
    I wasn't present but from the circumstances described, I don't think it meets the statutory definition of abduction.

    MAYBE - you could have made a case for - http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp...0+cod+18.2-404but it requires a LEO.
    when you go to see the Magistrate and request your warrant... he or she will probably deny your request because an officer is normally needed for felony cases.
    I'm curious about this. I only have one experiece with it and I did get initial resistance from the magistrate who indicated "only police can get a felony warrant". That's untrue, but I'm not aware of a legal means of coercing their cooperation.

    At least the last 3 or 4 years legislation has been introduced by various assembly members to statutorily restrict the issuance of felony warrants to polices, C.A.'s and a few others. Fortunately it's been beaten back.

    What are the magistrates afraid of, do they have something against citizens?


    Fortunately, I'd already talked to a very nice and helpful FCPD guy who was able to lend a quick assist.
    Not sure this code would work either. The guard was never asked to stop by the people in control of the people in charge of the property.

    § 18.2-404. Obstructing free passage of others.

    Any person or persons who in any

    • public place or
    • on any private property
    open to the public

    • unreasonably or
    • unnecessarily
    obstructs the free passage of other persons

    • to and from or within such place or property
    and

    • who shall fail or refuse to cease such obstruction or move on when requested to do so by
      • the owner or
      • lessee or
      • agent or
      • employee of such owner or lessee or
      • by a duly authorized law-enforcement officer
    shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

    Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit lawful picketing.


    In regards to the magistrate denying a felony warrant.... They have the power to decide if there is probable cause and can decline the warrant. It has been my experience that they make the victim report the matter to the police. I have taken a few reports where the person tried to do it all on his own and was denied a warrant. Often times... there was no basis for the warrant.

    It would be so easy to make up a story about someone and then go get a felony warrant. What happens to you when the charges are dropped in court against the guy? Nothing!!

    But what happened to the other guy?He was physically arrested, photographed, fingerprinted, placed in a cell, had to pay for a bond, maybe his car was towed during a traffic stop, he has an entry on his criminal record that needs to be expunged, he has to take time off from work to go to court, and he has to pay for an attorney.

    WOW!!!! You can really screw with someone by getting a felony warrant!!

    While minor misdemeanor charges are summons releasable.



    IMO... This is why the police get involved. They can contact the other person and see if there is anything to it and collect statements and evidence.


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    Not sure this code would work either. The guard was never asked to stop by the people in control of the people in charge of the property.
    You mean... those pesky, uppity citizens trying to get in? :P

    Yeah, I knew that was a reach too, I only remember the "obstructing the free passage of others" title & had to look it up. That's why I said maybe in all caps...

    Thanks for the follow up on the warrant. In my case, I coudln't find any meaty case law so I went to FCPD firstand got the particulars on the table. After some discussion, and research hiseyes lit up like a kid with a new toy at Christmas

    "You just let me know if you want to follow through with this, it's surely a felony". Then he gave me all the info I'd need for the magistrate. Sure, I probably could have pushed the magistrate hard enough to get the warrant. I had all the necessary evidence myself. I told FCPD up front I didn't need them to so much 'do everything for me' rather, they're the 'paid professional' in this area of society and probably know more of the ins and outs of the warrant process.

    That was correct. Plus, I knew very well that it would be my sworn word that would be involved. Once FCPD indicated we had a crime here, I feltconfident the situation would be resolved to my satisfaction.

    I can see thelogic in making sure there's evidence to support a warrant but - thatIS the magistrate's job after all.

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    Mr. Y wrote:
    Snipped....
    I can see thelogic in making sure there's evidence to support a warrant but - thatIS the magistrate's job after all.
    There are times when the Magistrate will not issue a warrant to the police and they have ALL they need to prove the case.

    I recall I was declined once because of a "magistrate's conference" where they "talked" about a code. No legal ruling on it to say it was not valid.

    The written code was clear... I had what the code said I needed. He refused to issue the warrant.

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    LEO 229 wrote:
    Mr. Y wrote:
    Snipped....
    I can see thelogic in making sure there's evidence to support a warrant but - thatIS the magistrate's job after all.
    There are times when the Magistrate will not issue a warrant to the police and they have ALL they need to prove the case.

    I recall I was declined once because of a "magistrate's conference" where they "talked" about a code. No legal ruling on it to say it was not valid.

    The written code was clear... I had what the code said I needed. He refused to issue the warrant.
    Got a better one for ya 229 -

    I'm working off duty and a guy exits a restaurant, walking quickly behind his girl who just walked off on him. She gets in the car, starts the engine and he yells "if you leave me here, I'll bust out your windows".

    She stops the car, he walks over and literally rips the passenger side mirror off the car. I arrest him for vandalism (auto tampering)and DIP.

    Magistrate says "good thing you got the DIP on him, otherwise you could be facing a false arrest situation". With the deer in the headlight look I say "why?" and he says, ready?

    The police dont arrest people for damaging other people's property!
    James Reynolds

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    Instructor Bio - http://proactiveshooters.com/about-us/

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