Saturday, December 5, 2009

Social Networking (Facebook) Helps Exonerate Teen

Evidence collected from social networks has been increasingly used to obtain convictions. Recently, however, evidence collected from Facebook resulted in the dismissal of robbery charges against a New York teen. According to the a posting on, defense attorneys were excited to hear of "a Brooklyn teenager's acquittal over robbery charges when it was learned the teen had posted a status update on Facebook from his home computer during the crime. " While the facts related in a New York Post story vary slightly, it does appear that Facebook was used to support the teen's "alibi".

As the posting indicates. Location features of social networking services, such as Google Latitude, may be utilized as "legal tool[s]" in the future. However, members of organizations such as Electronic Frontier Foundation have cautioned about the privacy risk of location features, particularly those that have a location history function.

Hat tip to Equal Justice Works E-Clips