When someone is accused of drunk driving, instigating a bar fight, disturbing the peace, trespassing, resisting or even shoplifting, they may be tempted to vent about their circumstances online. It is particularly tempting if you think the bouncer in Power and Light was the one who started it all! The fact that someone has been accused of this kind of wrongdoing can feel unfair or like a miscarriage of justice under many circumstances. It’s only natural to seek support from your friends or community.
Yet, if you have been charged with either a misdemeanor or a felony, it is imperative that you not use social media (or any other electronic means) to process your frustration — even if you are innocent and furious at the whole situation.
Prosecutors now regularly browse social media, search engine history, emails and texts for any evidence that they can use to build their case. Even seemingly mundane posts and pictures can be misinterpreted, so it is vitally important that you either stay off of social media or only use it with great care until your case has been fully resolved.
Be proactive about your defense
By understanding just how risky it is for individuals who are either under investigation or have been formally charged with criminal wrongdoing to engage on social media, those who are facing accusations can make more informed decisions. It is also important for these individuals to take care when texting, emailing and utilizing search engines for these same reasons.
With that being said, there is no substitute for seeking legal guidance when a possible criminal conviction is staring you in the face. While being proactive online is a great way to help protect your rights, if you are facing criminal charges, it is time to speak with an attorney about building the strongest defense strategy possible under the circumstances.