Monday, January 9, 2012

Today We Tell All The Secrets - Well Not Quite

The truth is, there’s a very delicate balance between “right to know” and “need to know”. Two recent high profile cases are prime examples of this fact.

Consider this, every piece of information officers and detectives develop is a building block to a pyramid, the pyramid being a potential criminal case. Compromise or remove just one piece, especially in the foundation, and the structure grows weak. It can even collapse completely. And, like it or not, some things are not released to protect a person’s right to a fair trial.

There are times we release information to get assistance in solving a case. Other times we withhold information is to keep from jeopardizing a case. Equally important to protecting a case is protecting family members during some of the most devastating cases. The last thing I want is for a family member to learn about the loss of a loved one or details of how they may have died from a news report.

Finally, in big investigations, we develop many leads and talk with lots of people that end up being unrelated to the investigation. If we talked about each and every item we investigated or person we spoke with, there are those who could be affected adversely.

So while there are those who clamor and demand to know it all, sometimes we just can’t tell all the secrets.