Social media has gained a lot of recognition in nearly all spheres of life. Right from individuals to businesses and institutions, it is a craze for communicating and making various transactions. Amazingly, there is also a complex relationship between social media and criminal law. While it has helped law enforcement persons and agencies to curb crime, social media sites have also screwed up people’s freedom. Consider the following circumstances and which the subject will either make or destroy you.
There is an increase in sexual assault cases reported in law courts and it is such a pity that they have multiplied with the advent of social media which was rather thought to be liberating. Age has been a problem in all social media websites. While online dating has helped people find love and lasting relationships, it has put a number of them behind bars too. Men especially, have fallen victims by finding themselves entangled in a love affair with under-age children. People just make acquaintances on social media and before you know it, you meet and start dating. Sadly, it turns out that one of the victims is an under-age and it suddenly becomes an assault case.
Social media evidence
Courts have now embraced social media as a source of evidence and law enforcement officers are really finding it cheap to nub unknowing citizens. People often post a lot of content on social media sites, content that is even rather too personal and it ends up incriminating them. Consider a case whereby someone has posted images identifying him or her with a criminal gang through the weapons that are shown on social media. In case this particular person is taken to court as a terror suspect, it will only take a few distrustful friends to release the photographs and have the victim charged with a terror offense.
Alcoholism is greatly praised in the social media because people are seeking acceptance and they desire to be identified with certain social groups. Even when people know that it is a crime to drive under the influence of alcohol, they forget and post their photographs on social media sites without the knowledge that law enforcement officers could easily pop in and take it up as evidence. In case of an accident, people find it hard to defend themselves when there is solid evidence on their social sites indicating that they were driving under the influence of alcohol.
Criminals are taking up people’s profiles and personal details to execute various crimes and then cover themselves up. In this case, both criminals and innocent people have been charged with various crimes. There are people who will steal identity and use it in bank robberies and other forms of crime and they actually get away with it. This lands the innocent person in trouble as he or she struggles to explain how his or her identity credentials were found at a crime scene. Some misleading links posted on social sites have deceived users to accessing classified material and they end up in the dock for trespassing and accessing things such as military secrets.
In general, there is a very complex relationship between social media and criminal law. While some attorneys are specializing in social media crimes to offer the most upbeat legal representation, law enforcement officers are also going technological by milking evidence from all sources.