Saturday, May 21, 2022

CAN MY SOCIAL MEDIA MESSAGES BE USED AGAINST ME IN COURT?

The answer is yes, provided the state can show the messages are genuine.

The state may prove you were the source of an email, text or other social media message through circumstantial evidence, including the message’s appearance, contents, and substance. The message’s reliability may be established when a witness testifies as to the message’s distinctive characteristics.

For example in People v. Brand, the State was able to show that certain Facebook Messenger messages from “Masetti Meech,” came from the defendant. The victim testified that while they were dating, defendant messaged her via Facebook messenger multiple times under that username. Further, at least one of the messages contained unique information not widely known to other persons, such as the location of the victim’s car, which defendant had taken.

If you have been charged with a criminal offense, contact an experienced attorney immediately. An attorney can review your case for your best possible defense. Did the police follow proper procedures in collecting evidence against you? Is it clear that any circumstantial evidence points to you? Is there more than one way to interpret any messages that you wrote? Even if the evidence against you is overwhelming, an attorney who is respected in the court house may be able to negotiate a more favorable plea agreement than you could on your own.

If you have questions about this or another related Illinois criminal or traffic matter, please contact Matt Keenan at 847-568-0160 or email matt@mattkeenanlaw.com.

(Besides Skokie, Matt Keenan also serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Chicago, Deerfield, Des Plaines, Evanston, Glenview, Morton Grove, Mount Prospect, Niles, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Wilmette and Winnetka.)