Yes, Your Parole Officer Can Use Facebook Too

from the stupid-criminal-series dept

It seems there’s never a shortage of folks trying to get listed in the new feature about stupid criminals giving themselves away. We just had the bank robber who bragged about his escapades on MySpace, and now we have a story about a girl (under the legal drinking age) awaiting trial for vehicular homicide for driving drunk and killing a motorcyclist. Apparently, as a part of her bail while waiting for trial, she was not to drink alcohol or spend time with people drinking alcohol. So, now she’s in a bit of trouble after authorities found photos of her drinking alcohol with college friends on Facebook. Apparently, she never thought anyone would notice. The judge, however, is now forcing her to wear a special ankle bracelet that senses alcohol in perspiration. Either way, once again, it’s nice to see that for all the moral panic talk about the “harm” done by social networks, some law enforcement folks are using it to actually catch criminals.

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Comments on “Yes, Your Parole Officer Can Use Facebook Too”

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Ima Fish (profile) says:

She should move to my county. Here administrative bureaucracy has put blocks on various websites (not yet!) to keep employees from goofing off. It blocked sites such as Facebook and MySpace, which the local probation department would use to keep an eye on probationers. Not anymore. The agents complained about it, but the administration is not backing down. This is certainly a circumstance where the people making the rules do not understand what they’re doing, at all.

Apps-R-Us Facebook Application Develolpers (user link) says:

Facebook Application Development

This has everything to with innocent until proven guilty, if you live in the US this is the LAW!

Now there are a million different possible scenarios here, in which she could be either innocent or guilty, but unless there are dates in the pictures, or perhaps some event happening that can be easily dated and proved, i.e then this “evidence” should have been found inadmissible in Court if she had a halfway decent attorney…(pictures taken at a concert at an obvious venue where there was only one show that year for example…)

The fact of the matter is, that without some kind of date-linking evidence in the pictures, there is no way to tell when they were taken. The date of upload is absolutely irrelevant.

I just got done uploading pictures from a vacation I took 2 summers ago to my Facebook account. I’m drinking alcohol in quite a few of these pictures… Does this mean if I was on probation NOW I should get in trouble for something I did two summers ago? Of course not.

So, I do agree, more then likely this girl is a complete idiot and actually did perpetrate the crimes accused of, I just want everyone to be clear that she is entitled to the benefit of the doubt under the Law, and none of us have any idea what really happened…

Visit Apps-R-Us

Eric says:

It's probation not parole...

I work for a probation department and I can tell you that we have had several instances where we’ve used Facebook or Myspace to catch someone breaking their conditions of probation or pre-trial (as it appears this person was on). Parole is AFTER jail, Probation is so you DON’T have to go to jail.

Of course I’m also the Admin and have just recently blocked those sites as Ima Fish’s county has. But I also unblock the sites at the officers request for individual cases that are being searched. We don’t have that large of a connection and our internet speeds were being crushed by online video and social websites.

Zak says:

So if someone drives drunk and kills someone, there is a body on the street, there is alcohol in the blood, there are witnesses, there are the cops, she’s guilty, it’s just semantics. What’s left to prove? I have ZERO sympathy for drunk drivers they should be exempted from the law and guilty unless proven otherwise.


aguywhoneedstenbucks says:

Re: Re:

I don’t have any sympathy for them either, but that’s not how justice works. If we exempt them, let’s exempt all other deplorable acts. If you get accused of molesting a child, you’re automatically guilty until you’re proven innocent. It’d be a great way to get rid of people you don’t like. Just because someone points a finger at you doens’t mean you’re guilty no matter what the crime is. Anything less than a fair trial is a witch hunt.

Gene Cavanaugh (profile) says:

Stu5423935pid criminals

Good article.

Funny, though, the “entertainment” (brain-washing?) industry seems to always portray criminals as brilliant a charismatic, and law enforcement as dull and boring.

When I was earning my law degree, I spent a lot of time (required) with criminals in the state prison system. Result? They are “just people”, but lower in intelligence and personal responsibility, generally.

So I never watch such things on TV (I abhor being brain washed) and am never surprised by these things.

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