How Can Social Media Affect Your Criminal Case Battle?
If you are facing criminal charges, or under investigation, it is possible for your social media presence to work against you. Your posts, including comments, images, or video, can be used as evidence in court. Police investigators will harvest information from all your social media accounts, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc., to find evidence to support the prosecution’s case against you.
Social Media Information Is Admissible.
All the information on your social media accounts is typically admissible at trial, meaning it can be used as evidence in a court of law. The data collected from your accounts can be used to mischaracterize you, painting you in a negative light, and can perhaps be used to lead a jury to believe that you are capable of committing the crimes you are accused of.
How Your Social Media Posts Could Damage Your Defense
Your defense attorney has the duty to protect you in court – but can run into serious problems if you have certain types of information available on your social media accounts. The types of postings that could affect your defense case include:
- Posts or messages that could show you have the capacity to commit acts of violence.
- Posts of you drinking an excess of alcohol.
- Posts with negative content about another person who is involved in the case, including a wife, girlfriend, boyfriend, former relationship partner, etc.
- Images or comments revealing you taking part in illegal narcotics.
- Texts or instant messages exchanged with known criminals.
- Threats to another person in texts or instant messaging.
Your Private Social Media Accounts: Are You Safe?
The easy answer is no. You may believe a “private” account cannot be accessed, but in fact, any electronic data you have posted can be found, and used against you in a court of law. If you want to share how you feel about your case with another person, or discuss details regarding the charges you are facing, your words could be presented in court to damage your defense. If you are facing criminal charges of any type, stay away from all social media, as well as any discussions regarding the case by phone, text, or email.
The only person you are safe to speak with is your criminal defense attorney – only your conversations with your attorney are protected – no others, even conversations with a spouse, sibling, or best friend. Your phone conversations may be monitored, or an out of context statement to someone can land you in hot water. If a friend, relative, or any other person wants to speak with you about your case, don’t respond, as all of what you say could be used against you at trial, and may blindside a well-crafted defense case that could win in court.
Deleting Your Posts – Will It Work?
You may become nervous about comments or photos you have posted on social media and have gone through them, deleting any images, videos, or comments you feel may damage you. Unfortunately, once something is posted on the internet, it can be found whether you delete it or not. The proof that you have deleted information could look like you were attempting to destroy evidence and support the prosecution’s claim that you are guilty of the charges you are facing.
Your Defense Case and Social Media
Your criminal defense lawyer will ask you about your social media accounts, and if you have posted anything that could harm your case. You must be completely open and honest with your attorney so that your defense can counter any information found on social media that the prosecution may try and use against you. Your lawyer should never be taken by surprise in court but should be well prepared for anything and everything the prosecution presents as evidence.
Types of Cases Impacted by Social Media
Many criminal cases can be affected by information found on social media, including drug crimes, violent crimes, domestic violence charges, and even criminal drunk driving charges. A post that reveals you out with friends, with drinks on the table on the same night as the accident in question, could affect your case. Negative comments about a former relationship partner, or threatening texts to a person who accuses you of committing sexual assault, stalking, or domestic abuse could lead members of the jury to believe you committed the crime – even when you are innocent.
Contact Steven Titus & Associates, P.C.
If you are accused of a crime, or under investigation in a criminal case, contact the trial lawyers at Steven Titus & Associates, P.C., immediately at (307) 257-7800. We have an impressive win/loss record in court and extensive trial experience. If you are facing the loss of your freedom, you want to know your rights are being protected by a criminal defense attorney that can craft a persuasive defense in court, and who can communicate to the jury with confidence.
Contact us as soon as you can, and get Steven Titus & Associates, P.C., in your corner today!
Your FREE Case Strategy Session
On All Injury and Criminal Cases
Contact our office right now to speak to
someone who wants to help you.