Florida Senate - 2021                      CS for CS for SB 1868
       By the Committees on Judiciary; and Criminal Justice; and
       Senator Bean
       590-03549-21                                          20211868c2
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to privileged communications made to
    3         crime stoppers organizations; amending s. 16.557,
    4         F.S.; prohibiting a person from knowingly and
    5         willfully attempting to obtain, obtaining, or
    6         disclosing a privileged communication or protected
    7         information; providing a penalty; providing an
    8         exemption from criminal liability for employees, board
    9         members, or volunteers of a crime stoppers
   10         organization in certain circumstances; providing
   11         immunity from civil liability for certain actions by
   12         specified persons concerning privileged
   13         communications; limiting the uses of privileged
   14         communications or evidence of such communications;
   15         providing an effective date.
   17  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   19         Section 1. Section 16.557, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   20  read:
   21         16.557 Crime stoppers organizations; disclosure of
   22  privileged communications or protected information; civil
   23  immunity; use.—
   24         (1) As used in this section, the term:
   25         (a) “Crime stoppers organization” means a private not-for
   26  profit organization that collects and expends donations for
   27  rewards to persons who report to the organization information
   28  concerning criminal activity, and forwards that information to
   29  appropriate law enforcement agencies.
   30         (b) “Privileged communication” means the act of providing
   31  information to a crime stoppers organization for the purpose of
   32  reporting alleged criminal activity.
   33         (c) “Protected information” includes the identity of a
   34  person who engages in privileged communication with a crime
   35  stoppers organization and any records, recordings, oral or
   36  written statements, papers, documents, or other tangible items
   37  provided to or collected by a crime stoppers organization, a law
   38  enforcement crime stoppers coordinator or his or her staff, or a
   39  law enforcement agency in connection with such privileged
   40  communication.
   41         (2)(a) Except pursuant to criminal discovery or as provided
   42  in paragraph (b), a person who knowingly and willfully attempts
   43  to obtain, obtains, or discloses a privileged communication or
   44  protected information, or any information concerning a
   45  privileged communication or protected information, commits a
   46  felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s.
   47  775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
   48         (b) This subsection does not apply to:
   49         1. The person who provides the privileged communication or
   50  protected information; or
   51         2.An employee, a board member, or a volunteer of a crime
   52  stoppers organization while acting in the course and scope of
   53  the person’s duties or functions; or
   54         3.2. A law enforcement officer or an employee of a law
   55  enforcement agency or the Department of Legal Affairs when he or
   56  she is acting within the scope of his or her official duties.
   57         (3)A person in the course and scope of his or her duties
   58  or functions who receives, forwards, or acts on a privileged
   59  communication is immune from civil liability for damages
   60  resulting from an act or omission in the performance of his or
   61  her duties or functions unless the act or omission was
   62  intentional or grossly negligent.
   63         (4)(a) Evidence of a privileged communication, and
   64  information contained within a privileged communication, from an
   65  anonymous source to a crime stoppers organization may not be:
   66         1. Relied upon or considered in determining whether
   67  probable cause exists to issue either an arrest or a search
   68  warrant.
   69         2. Admissible or subject to discovery in any court
   70  proceeding.
   71         (b) A privileged communication may only be used to assist a
   72  law enforcement agency in directing an investigation of alleged
   73  criminal activity.
   74         (c)This subsection does not limit the right of any
   75  criminal defendant to criminal discovery.
   76         Section 2. This act shall take effect October 1, 2021.