In-custody Informants in Texas
State statute requires an attorney representing the state to track the use of jailhouse informant testimony, regardless of whether the testimony is presented at trial, and any benefits offered to the informant in exchange for their testimony. If the state intends to use jailhouse informant testimony at the defendant’s trial, the state shall disclose to the defendant any information that is relevant to the person’s credibility including: (1) the person’s complete criminal history, including any charges that were dismissed or reduced as part of a plea bargain, (2) any grant, promise, or offer of immunity from prosecution, reduction of sentence or other leniency or special treatment given by the state in exchange for the person’s testimony, and (3) information concerning other criminal cases in which the person has testified, or offered to testify, against a defendant with whom the person was imprisoned or confined including any grant, promise, or offer given by the state in exchange for the testimony. Evidence of prior offenses committed by jailhouse informant who received a benefit may be admissible for purpose of impeachment, regardless of whether the person was convicted of the offense. Previously only crimes that resulted in convictions were admissible, meaning that previous charges dismissed against a jailhouse informant in exchange for testimony were inadmissible. Effective: 2017.