We Love Our Social Media, But So Do The Police

May 13, 2015

By Keffer Hirschauer LLP

Facebook status updates, tweets, tagging individuals in photographs, and sharing photographs via Instagram are becoming more and more commonplace. And while the Internet provides a degree of freedom of self-expression that many people enjoy and a way of sending information quickly to large groups of people, law enforcement is finding social media useful in their criminal investigations.

In a case of first impression in Indiana, the Court of Appeals recently ruled that several Twitter posts, in which a defendant indicated that he was involved in gang activity and possessed firearms, could be admitted at his murder trial. The Court of Appeals held, in Wilson v. State of Indiana, 45A03-1409-CR-317, that the Twitter posts were sufficiently reliable to be admitted in the homicide trial after a witness testified that she communicated with the defendant via the Twitter account in question and that she was familiar with the account header and user. While the opinion by the Court of Appeals does not elaborate on potential dangers of impersonation, it does serve as a cautionary warning that is almost common place in our society: what you say can and will be used against you.

Contact Keffer Hirschauer LLP today if you have been accused of a crime. We stand ready to provide our clients with trusted representation and accurate information regarding the law and its application to their individualized case. Act now and contact us today at (317) 857-0160.