In today’s world, social media plays a big part in many people’s daily lives. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are used by millions of people across the world to connect with one another. Social media is so ingrained into our society that it is important to understand the effects that these digital networking platforms play in our life. In particular, social media has created some concerns when it comes to dealing with domestic violence allegations. In certain scenarios, information or pictures that a defendant posted online could be used against him or her in a criminal case.
Domestic Abuse Laws in Illinois
The state of Illinois defines domestic violence as acts of harassment, abuse, intimidation, interference with personal liberty, or willful deprivation toward a family or household member. In many cases, acts of violence can also be considered assault and/or battery, but when these acts are allegedly perpetrated against a family or household member, they can lead to domestic violence charges.
One of the most common remedies sought by alleged victims of domestic violence are orders of protection. These legal orders can prevent the alleged abuser from contacting or coming near the alleged victim. While an emergency order of protection can be obtained immediately, a hearing will be held before any more permanent orders of protection will be issued. In this hearing, a judge may consider any relevant information about the situation, including information taken from social media.
Using Social Media Posts as Evidence
There are many ways in which domestic violence cases could be affected by social media. A large volume of content is posted on social media by millions of users daily. This content could range from photos and updates to location notifications. When it comes to what you post on social media, certain types of posts could be seen as incriminating, or the information shared could be used to corroborate other claims, confirm statements made by the alleged victim, or track your location at certain times.
For example, consider a couple who is married. The wife has accused the husband of committing acts of abuse toward her one night while they were at home. The husband tried to state that he was not at home at the time the abuse allegedly took place, but it was found that he posted a photo to Instagram that night of a meal he ate while at home. This photograph, as well as location information attached to the post, may be able to be used as evidence that the husband was indeed at home.
Contact an Arlington Heights Criminal Defense Attorney
Domestic violence is a crime that is taken seriously in Illinois, and any allegations of domestic violence will usually be investigated thoroughly by police. If you have been charged with domestic abuse or related crimes, it is imperative that you act quickly to determine your best defense strategy. Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law has been helping clients resolve their criminal defense cases for more than 25 years. To schedule a free consultation with our qualified Rolling Meadows, IL domestic violence defense lawyer, call us today at 847-253-3400.