Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. Attorneys & Counselors At Law
Call us anytime.
During office hours, call 904-701-0589
After office hours, call 904-727-7191

Regular office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Law Enforcement's Use of Social Media: User Beware

For many people, especially those of certain age, life is lived in the social media spotlight. Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram have become the popular way to communicate. Ordinary citizens are not the only people who use social media. User beware: If your friends can see your posting, so can law enforcement. A recent survey of agencies throughout the country found that over 80% of those agencies use social media in their criminal investigations. Lawyers also routinely use it to discover evidence about litigants, witnesses and even jurors. 

When information is posted on public websites for all to see, the person posting that information has lost his or her ability to argue the information should be private and, in some instances, has lost the right to argue disclosure of such information violates the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Likewise, it is not uncommon to see information found on social media used to impeach witnesses at trial. Further, child custody battles have been won (and lost) as the result of information found on the internet.

The best way to protect yourself is to understand that using social media to disclose private information makes that information not private. Serious criminal prosecutions, such as the rape of a 16 year old by fellow schoolmates in Ohio, were successful because the alleged assailants posted pictures and comments on their Facebook pages. Think before you post.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
email us for a response
  1. Martindale Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Rated for highest level of Provisional Excellence 2016 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2016 American College of Trial Lawyers William J.Sheppard Best Lawyers Lawyer of the year 2014 The Florida Bar Board Certified Best Lawyers|Best Law Firms US News|Criminal Defense: White-Collor|Tier 1|Jacksonville|2017
  2. Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2017 AV Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability Super Lawyers Best Lawyers Linking Lawyers And Clients Worldwide

Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. Attorneys & Counselors at Law.
215 N. Washington Street
Jacksonville, FL 32202

Phone: 904-701-0589
Phone: 904-727-7191
Fax: 904-356-9667
Map & Directions

Regular office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Back to top