Home » Uncategorized » Using Social Media to Reveal Identities of Police Officers, Informants and Witnesses

Using Social Media to Reveal Identities of Police Officers, Informants and Witnesses

Follow LawandSocialMedia on WordPress.com

Using Social Media to Reveal Identities of Police Officers, Informants and Witnesses

Like with most things, social media can be a double edge sword for law enforcement.  One of the downsides is that it allows criminals to alert the public about undercover police officers and informants.

To date, individuals have been prosecuted for revealing the identity of law enforcement and those who assist them.  The charges range from obstruction of justice to witness tampering.  A New York court (People v. Horton) recently upheld the witness tampering conviction of a defendant who outed a confidential informant.

In Horton, the defendant had been charged with  selling a controlled substance.  His conviction stemmed primarily from a “controlled buy” from an informant which was videotaped.  Prior to his plea on the charge of selling a controlled substance, the defendant, identified the informant, uploaded a clip of the surveillance video to YouTube, and provided a link to his Facebook page.  This in turn led to a Facebook discussion about the informant including comments like “snitches get stitches” and “I hope she gets what’s coming to her.”

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: