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How can social media affect a DUI case?

On Behalf of | Apr 14, 2018 | DUI/DWI

Many people have become accustomed to posting every last detail of their lives on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. In 2013, Facebook reported that users uploaded 350 million new photos every day.

If the police arrest you for DUI, then you can be certain they will take a look at your social media. Courts have slowly acclimated to the prevalence of social media in modern society, and there are plenty of cases where a person’s Facebook post played a crucial role in the trial. You need to be mindful that if there is a picture of you drinking on the night in question uploaded to Facebook, then the prosecution will find it.

Privacy settings are not a fail-safe

Unfortunately, many people do not pay much mind to what goes on social media because they think their privacy settings prevent anyone who is not a friend from accessing the photos. However, if the prosecution believes there could be evidence on Facebook, then those people can request a subpoena from the court to make the records public. A photo could be fairly innocuous. Perhaps the photo shows you merely holding a beer can without actually drinking it. That may be enough to lend more credence to the prosecutor’s case.

Deleting pictures causes more problems than it solves

After the police release you on bond, you may think you can log onto your Facebook account and delete any posts or pictures incriminating you on the night in question. Similarly to privacy settings, a subpoena can give the court access to your social media accounts. If you deleted anything, the court may still be able to find it, and you will face harsher penalties for tampering with evidence.

Even if the photos are not that bad, deleting anything could reflect negatively on your character. Ultimately, you should avoid posting anything that reflects negatively on you on social media. There is no need for family members, co-workers or the police to see it.

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