No jail for Crime Stoppers head over anonymous tip

MIAMI - There won't be any jail time for the head of Miami-Dade County's Crime Stoppers program for contempt of court over his refusal to divulge details about an anonymous tip.

Circuit Judge Victoria Brennan made that decision Thursday at a hearing for Richard Masten, the program's executive director. Brennan had ordered Masten to provide information about the tip to a defense attorney in a cocaine possession case.

There was no immediate final decision on Masten's punishment.

Masten last week ate a piece of paper in court containing what he said was the tip information rather than give it up. Masten, a former police chief, says the anonymous tip program's integrity is at stake.

Masten says that in 20 years, Crime Stoppers has helped solve some 34,000 crimes.

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