Social media investigations are commonly used during court cases to provide information relevant to a case, to supplement evidence, establish character, support or disqualify an alibi. Social media is being used more and more in custody cases, divorces, and even criminal trials.
THE FACTS ABOUT SMI
Social media posts are now being used as supplemental evidence in court to establish foundation and character, support alibis, and provide valuable information relevant to court cases. The benefits are unlimited, ranging from direct and corroborative evidence to risk assessment and ongoing evidence of activities. A custody case in which a mother’s alleged drug use is a concern can be supported with photographs and status updates posted to social media of the mother using, or discussing using drugs. Geo tagged posts can prove that a potential key witness was in the physical location of a crime as it was being committed. Whether a criminal or civil case, social media is now a growing catalyst for providing evidence to the courtroom. But what does a social media investigation require? Who can conduct one and how must the evidence be collected?
The fact is that anyone can dig around and find information on the internet. True, but attorneys walk into hazardous territory when they or their paralegals attempt to do a social media investigation on their own, without the proper knowledge and understanding of how the whole process works.
Why? Well, for one it can take a tremendous amount of time. Scrolling through a seemingly endless Twitter feed and clicking through a 200 photo album on Facebook is time intensive and might not give you what you need. Additionally, there are requirements for what information and data must be collected and presented to the court, some of which can’t be accessed without technical know-how and/or sophisticated software. Lastly, and the greatest potential hazard to an attorney, is a possible violation of legal ethics. An attorney could unknowingly violate legal ethics and face evidence being thrown out in court, or, in extreme cases, disbarment if they conduct an unethical investigation.
Keeping in mind there key differences between an amateur social media investigation and a professional one. We focus on software, efficiency, provability, and an understanding of each case individually customized for your need. We at Pri Eyes Investigations Inc. are available to answer your questions and fully prepared to begin an online investigation for you. Contact us at (866) 774-3937 to speak with a specialist today!