Crime Stoppers guarantees that tipsters never have to give their name. When you contact Crime Stoppers the call taker is interested in the information not who you are. Crime Stoppers does not subscribe to call display and conversations are not tape recorded. The only person who can jeopardize revealing a caller’s identity is the caller him or herself.
Tips For Callers
- DO NOT tell anyone that you have called Crime Stoppers. The only way to truly remain anonymous is if you do not tell anyone.
- Record your code number when you call Crime Stoppers.
- Your code number should be treated like your PIN on your bank card – you need to know it but no one else should. Keep your code number somewhere where no one else will find it.
- If you chose to deal directly with the police regarding the case you called Crime Stoppers about you are no longer a part of the Crime Stoppers program and cannot be eligible for rewards (because you are no longer anonymous).
Supreme Court Ruling – Crime Stoppers Anonymity Guaranteed
The identity of people giving tips to Crime Stoppers has been protected by the Supreme Court of Canada. Canada’s highest court ruled unanimously on February 16th, 1997 that police do not have to disclose any information they receive from this internationally recognized crime prevention program.
Justice Beverly McLachlin, in writing the court’s decision said protecting informants has always been a priority in law.
“The rule of informer privilege is of such fundamental importance to the workings of a criminal justice system it cannot be balanced against other interest relating to the administration of justice,” McLachlin wrote. “Once the privilege has been established, neither the police nor the court possesses discretion to abridge it.”
This ruling of the Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s decision and ordered a new trial for a Vancouver man acquitted in a drug case. Richard Dean Leipert’s lawyer successfully challenged a search warrant flowing from a Crime Stoppers’ tip. Leipert had been charged with unlawfully trafficking in marijuana. During the trial Leipert’s lawyer used the Charter of Rights to argue prosecutors should disclose details of how police got a search warrant.
The Crown, seeking to protect the identity of a Crime Stoppers’ informant, chose not to call evidence at the trail and Leipert was acquitted.
The Crown appealed with the Greater Vancouver Crime Stoppers Association intervening. The B.C. Court of appeal upheld the appeal and ordered a new trial.
The decision by the Supreme Court has confirmed a long standing position of Crime Stoppers that any details about the informant, or information received, however minute, could in fact jeopardize the informants anonymity, and as an end result destroy the integrity of the Crime Stoppers program.”