Crime Stoppers director faces jail time for eating tip in court...

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posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 12:11 PM
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MIAMI – A Crime Stoppers administrator was found in contempt of court after eating a piece of paper a Miami-Dade County circuit judge ordered turned over.

The Miami Herald reported that Judge Victoria R. Brennan ordered Richard Masten to turn over information gained from a tip, but Crime Stoppers policy guarantees anonymity.

Masten, who oversees the nonprofit organization, refused and ate the paper in court, saying the identity of the tipster could be determined.


www.wptv.com...



Bravo to a man for keeping to his convictions! There's no doubt in my mind that the defense attorney's intentions is to allow for the identification of the anonymous tipster, and that that person would likely be in mortal danger. The judge's position is questionable, and may be motivated by nefarious means... It is Miami after all...

More:

foxnewsinsider.com...




posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 12:17 PM
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You can't really make that judgement without knowing the case. For all you know, the tip was fake to begin with, and the judge merely wanted more to prove it was legitimate.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 12:20 PM
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reply to post by boncho
 


I guess the coc aine in her purse was fake too?

Or has Crimestoppers wasted their lucky guess on a small time drug bust instead of a winning lottery ticket...



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 04:32 PM
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Mirthful Me
reply to post by boncho
 


I guess the coc aine in her purse was fake too?

Or has Crimestoppers wasted their lucky guess on a small time drug bust instead of a winning lottery ticket...


So you are saying that because there was something found the tip was legitimate? It's impossible for a jilted lover to put drugs in someone's purse then submit an anonymous tip is it?

I'm simply providing the caveat, that just because something looks some way, it does not mean it is the full story. Which leaves making judgments on such things pointless.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 04:38 PM
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boncho
You can't really make that judgement without knowing the case. For all you know, the tip was fake to begin with, and the judge merely wanted more to prove it was legitimate.



Respectfully, I don't agree with this opinion and I don't need to know the ins and outs of the case to take that stance.(fake tip or not)

Hundreds of crimes are solved and/or stopped by the anonymous tips provided to CrimeStoppers each year. If they begin revealing information that may lead to the sources of the info, people will stop calling and the retired police chief knows it.

I hope he doesn't go to jail, but if he does spend time served the city of Miami should throw him a ticker-tape parade when released.



edit on 19-3-2014 by OatDelphi because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 05:01 PM
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reply to post by OatDelphi
 



And if the tip or information cannot be scrutinized? Seems like a really easy way to weaponize something. Hell, if I don't like you I can just dump XYZ at your house and call it in right?


The information concerned a case in which a Hialeah woman named Lissette Alvarez, 45, was arrested on a coc aine possession charge. Alvarez's lawyer, Jean Michel D'Escoubet, said the information is important to the defense and they are not interested in the identity of the tipster.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 05:55 PM
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You can't eat paper in court, everybody knows that .



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 06:49 PM
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OatDelphi

boncho
You can't really make that judgement without knowing the case. For all you know, the tip was fake to begin with, and the judge merely wanted more to prove it was legitimate.



Respectfully, I don't agree with this opinion and I don't need to know the ins and outs of the case to take that stance.(fake tip or not)

Hundreds of crimes are solved and/or stopped by the anonymous tips provided to CrimeStoppers each year. If they begin revealing information that may lead to the sources of the info, people will stop calling and the retired police chief knows it.



Respectfully, I'm going to disagree with your disagreement. First, hundreds of crimes arent necessarily solved. Hundreds of arrests and incarcerations aren't quite the same as hundreds of crimes being solved. Second, one of the primary tenets of our judicial system, secondary in my opinion only to your right to trial by jury is the right to face your accuser in court. That opportunity, that right, is denied anyone convicted by an anonymous tip. The process of allowing it is antithetical to justice being served. Especially when evidence against you can't be cross examined. It's just wrong.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 06:54 PM
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I thought eats a tip in court meant something way different to this!!

i hate eating paper. it tastes bad...

makes me retch



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 06:55 PM
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Unfortunately I think the judge can charge contempt of court.And maybe even tampering or destruction of evidence too.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 06:57 PM
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The real question.

Did he swallow?



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 08:56 PM
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reply to post by Lysergic
 


Of course he did...

Casual interest or scatological fetish academia?



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 11:04 PM
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reply to post by boncho
 


Yes the system can be abused, and I understand your point. But just like any other system (gov't/laws, etc.) it is held up by the people who trust it. If the trust is lost the system doesn't work.
edit on 19-3-2014 by OatDelphi because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 11:16 PM
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peter vlar
Respectfully, I'm going to disagree with your disagreement. First, hundreds of crimes arent necessarily solved. Hundreds of arrests and incarcerations aren't quite the same as hundreds of crimes being solved. Second, one of the primary tenets of our judicial system, secondary in my opinion only to your right to trial by jury is the right to face your accuser in court. That opportunity, that right, is denied anyone convicted by an anonymous tip. The process of allowing it is antithetical to justice being served. Especially when evidence against you can't be cross examined. It's just wrong.


I agree with you the women is afforded the right to face her accuser, however the tipster isn't the accuser. The accuser is the state of Florida and she is facing her accusers in court.

Tips aren't used as evidence, they are reasons to start looking at something/someone(investigate). The prosecution, law enforcement and defense attorney are well aware that tips through CrimeStoppers are hearsay and inadmissible evidence due to the fact they are not first-hand witnesses.

"Her attorney, Jean Michel D’Escoubet, said Coral Gables police got a tip that his client was dealing coc aine and apprehended her at Hillstone restaurant on Miracle Mile. He said a search of her purse found residue and Alvarez was arrested and charged with possession. The police report said they found a small plastic bag of suspected coc aine."

www.miamiherald.com...

It's not like the police got a direct call about a woman who was dealing drugs and then immediately raced there and arrested her. Crimestoppers got a call, then they passed it on to the correct law enforcement agency, who then had to investigate and find cause for her apprehension. It was then during the apprehension that she was searched and the controlled substance was found.



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 12:17 AM
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im not a big fan of snitches and rats, to be honest. so it is hard for me to get behind crimestoppers, unless they are going after rapists and murderers.

I am also not a fan of anonymity in court. A snitch hiding behind the curtain on the witness stand....i can't get behind that.



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 07:49 AM
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reply to post by OatDelphi
 


I'm sorry but that's just crazy talk wrapped around the enigma of rationalization. How exactly is the tipster not someone who is accusing the defendant when that tip directly resulted in an investigation leading to an arrest? That's exactly what they are, an accuser and a cowardly one at that. I just can't see how that person leaving the anonymous tip should be exempt from cross examination. If safety is a concern you can testify via CCTV and there's WitPro. If the danger isn't at that level than there's no rationale that I can see behind being anonymous unless they have something to hide or gain from such anonymity. Neither scenario is conducive to justice being served and leave the defendant at a liability. They can't admit random anonymous tips as evidence to exonerate themselves, why should prosecutors be given undue advantage? The whole thing reeks and is in defiance of the "conflict clause" in the 6th amendment. It may also, depending in interpretation, violate Crawford V. Washington(2004).



"in all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right…to be confronted with the witnesses against him."



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 01:25 PM
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reply to post by peter vlar
 


This gets the runaround constantly however not in the news. If your accused of a crime-1st thing is to shut up-then your lawyer can wave the preliminary hearing and bound the case directly to the grand jury. In the prosecution presentation to the jury if a member ask who the tipster was they must supply the information.

Then at discovery the prosecution will have no choice but to release the information or it is a mistrial. Then the defense can call this person as a witness.

This can be spun different ways and I remember on my first grand jury an escapee called Rabbit veech was caught based on a tip. I ask the prosecution who this was and it practically got a war started. Finally, after much discussion, the judge interviewed me and ask why I wanted to know-I was just curious I told him-and it's within my rights to ask questions of the prosecution. He warned me that anyone who gave me information could get a felony charge-I don't remember just what the charge was-however the issue was never solved. We spent days arguing about it until the judge told we need to move along because we had over 400 cases to go through.

So yes, the tipster can be identified, but you need a damn good lawyer to do it. That is how both Barry Bonds and Roger Clements got off-because the prosecution would not say who ratted them out.



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 01:37 PM
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reply to post by Mirthful Me
 


I generally support anyone who refuses to allow the government unlimited access to information, but in this case it seems out of line because it was relevant to a defense in court. If a witness cannot be evaluated and questioned then they are not a witness, end of discussion.

What stops me from making the rounds on all of my enemies, ransacking their houses or cars illegally and planting drugs if i can't find any, then call crime stoppers on every one of them, secure in the knowledge that the only people who know who i am can't make the connection between me and the victims and will break the law to make sure people who can catch me never get a starting place for their investigation on me?



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 01:51 PM
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peter vlar
reply to post by OatDelphi
 


I'm sorry but that's just crazy talk wrapped around the enigma of rationalization. How exactly is the tipster not someone who is accusing the defendant when that tip directly resulted in an investigation leading to an arrest? That's exactly what they are, an accuser and a cowardly one at that. I just can't see how that person leaving the anonymous tip should be exempt from cross examination. If safety is a concern you can testify via CCTV and there's WitPro. If the danger isn't at that level than there's no rationale that I can see behind being anonymous unless they have something to hide or gain from such anonymity. Neither scenario is conducive to justice being served and leave the defendant at a liability. They can't admit random anonymous tips as evidence to exonerate themselves, why should prosecutors be given undue advantage? The whole thing reeks and is in defiance of the "conflict clause" in the 6th amendment. It may also, depending in interpretation, violate Crawford V. Washington(2004).



"in all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right…to be confronted with the witnesses against him."


You said it yourself, the tip results in an investigation. That means an inquiry where more clues, more evidence and more information has to be gained before the accuser(the city, county, state or federal prosecution) can charge someone with a crime. Charges can not be levied on an anonymous tip alone, that's what credible evidence is for.

For instance, someone could anonymously tell the police you stole cookies, but without evidence the police can't charge you. So they will take the tip and start an investigation(which is completely legal). They will look to see if there is evidence showing that the cookies are in your possession, or if you have crumbs around you, or if the wrapper is in your garbage can etc. etc. etc... If you are then found with some form of credible evidence law enforcement can arrest you and charge(accuse) you with theft.

Real life example...



posted on Mar, 20 2014 @ 02:18 PM
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spooky24
reply to post by peter vlar
 


That is how both Barry Bonds and Roger Clements got off-because the prosecution would not say who ratted them out.



Was the evidence against Bonds and Clemens credible? No. That's why they got off.

The prosecution produced evidence that was found during an investigation resulting from a tip. However the defense did their job and showed that the evidence that was presented to the court was not credible. In the end all the prosecution had to stand on was the anonymous tip, which again isn't admissible because it is hearsay. So the system worked and Bonds and Clemens walked.





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