Social media is such a common part of everyday life that many people simply don’t realize the impact their behavior on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms can have if they are facing criminal charges. Keep in mind the following dos and don’ts for social media after you’ve been charged with a crime in Colorado.
Don’t share any details
Anything you post to social media about the crime or details of your case can be used against you in court later. You should not post anything about the arrest or allegation at all, and this includes other people charged or involved, the police involved, witnesses and so forth. Even something you feel is clearly a joke could be taken the wrong way by someone else, and this will complicate your case unnecessarily.
To be on the safe side, it’s best not to post anything new to social media at all as your case progresses. Things you know are innocent could be used to paint you in a particular light later. For example, if you are charged with theft and then you post photos of expensive gifts someone gave you, the prosecutors could look at those photos as evidence of the theft. Even if you can prove those with gifts given to you by someone else and paid for with their own money, it can still cast a negative light on you in the minds of the judge and the prosecutor.
Don’t delete old posts
Once you are under an investigation and have hired a criminal lawyer in Denver, CO, it may be tempting to go through your social media and delete old posts because you are embarrassed by them in some way or worried about how they will make you appear to others. However, law enforcement may view the deletion of the old content as an attempt to conceal evidence, and this can be used to further the investigation into you. Generally speaking, law enforcement has tools that will allow them to uncover any posts you have deleted anyway.
Don’t accept new connections
Never accept any new connections or friend requests on social media after you have been charged with a crime. Investigators have created fake profiles or accounts on social media for the purposes of gathering evidence for a case, and it is usually entirely legal for them to do.
Even with privacy settings on, what you say to subscribers, friends and social communities is not really private. On top of this, if a witness who is cooperating with authorities is on your social network, they can give information to law enforcement without facing any consequences.
A criminal charge in Colorado can have devastating consequences on your life today and tomorrow. If you find yourself accused of committing a crime, speak to a criminal lawyer in Denver, CO for help as soon as you can. Your attorney will provide you support during this time, protect your rights and help you understand all your options and the legal system.
Thank you to the experts at Richard J. Banta, PC, for their insight into criminal defense and the law.