It is reasonable to assert that the prevalence of criminal informants
is tied to a failure of public relations.
TABLE 4: STATES WITH CRIMINAL INFORMANT
EVIDENCE POLICIES State Informant/Snitch Use California Cautionary jury instruction.
have strong incentives to lie and very few disincentives to lie, because criminal informants
are almost never punished," Natapoff said.
102) Many of these criminal informants
seek leniency by offering to incriminate their accomplices.
Alexandra Natapoff, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, is the author of Snitching: Criminal Informants
and the Erosion of American Justice (NYU Press), which won the 2010 ABA Silver Gavel Award Honorable Mention for Books.
, who are often used to smash organ-isecrime gangs and drugrings, can also be offered police help to reduce a potential prison sentence.
In reviewing this relationship and the manner in which reliability of criminal informants
becomes established, the team believed that the police department could have such a rapport with law-abiding citizens who wish only to help officers improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods.