TALLAHASSEE, Fla. /Florida Newswire/ -– Governor Charlie Crist today signed House Bill 271, also known as Rachel’s Law, which creates guidelines for law enforcement agencies’ use of confidential informants. Today marks the one-year anniversary of the death of Rachel Hoffman, who was murdered while being a confidential informant for the Tallahassee Police Department.
“Rachel’s Law is a good example of our democracy at work, where consensus is often necessary to achieve progress for a greater good,” said Governor Crist. “I applaud our law enforcement agencies for recognizing the need to provide more protections to confidential informants and supporting this legislation.”
Sponsored by Senators Mike Fasano and Representative Peter Nehr, the bill requires law enforcement agencies that use confidential informants to do the following:
• Inform each person being asked to serve as a confidential informant of the following:
o The agency’s inability to offer inducements.
o The informant’s opportunity to consult with an attorney, among other things.
• Establish policies and procedures addressing the recruitment and use of confidential informants and ensure that all appropriate personnel receive training about those policies and procedures.
• Establish written security procedures relating to files identifying a confidential informant.
• Review the agency’s confidential informant practices periodically to ensure the agency’s policies and procedures are being followed.
In addition to the bill’s sponsors, Rachel’s parents, Irv Hoffman and Margie Weiss, also attended the bill signing ceremony.