From sharing photos and thoughts to friends and family to keeping up with
current news stories, social media has become part of our daily lives.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other platforms have made the world
more connected than ever before.
But when it comes to facing criminal charges, what you do on social media
can actually harm your case. Since there is no Fourth Amendment Right
for the privacy of social media, investigators and prosecutors search
the internet for evidence to help them obtain a guilty verdict. Anything
you post on your social media accounts could potentially be used against
you in court.
The following are common examples of information used in a criminal case:
- Status updates, comments, or tagged posts which may indicate committing
an unlawful act or premeditation
- Location tags which describe the defendant’s whereabouts when the
- Photos of drug use or paraphernalia
- Descriptions of behavior
If you assume your privacy settings will protect your profiles from being
viewed by the investigators and prosecutors—that is not the case.
Many social media platforms cooperate with police investigations, revealing
“private” information to law enforcement agencies upon a formal
request. Additionally, investigators can search through the profiles of
the defendant’s peers to gain access to some of their content.
People facing criminal charges often make the mistake of deleting their
online presence altogether. If this is done after an arrest or when criminal
charges are filed, they may be found in contempt of court or possibly
charged with destruction of evidence, resulting in even more legal trouble.
So if you have been charged with a crime, avoid posting anything on social
media at all costs and wait until the conclusion of your case to go back
online. While it may be tempting to express your frustrations and thoughts
on the internet, the only person you should be talking to about your case
is your attorney.
If you have been arrested for a criminal offense in Daytona Beach,
request a free consultation with the
Law Offices of Robert Stepniak today.