Recently in Oakland County, a defendant was tried on drug charges. During deliberations, the girlfriend of the defendant sent a friend request via Facebook to one of the jurors. The juror immediately informed the judge and other jury members of the request. It is not known at this time whether the girlfriend or defendant sent the request since they each have access to each other's cell phones.
The girlfriend may face contempt charges for reaching out to a juror during deliberations. The defendant's attorney thinks the Facebook friend request is enough grounds for appeal. The defense attorney believes the mishap could have affected the other jurors and caused them to bring back a guilty verdict against his client.
Social media is a new face to the courtroom. Frequently, media and other persons use social media to give updates on case from the courtroom. However, it becomes a problem when it starts to affect the criminal proceedings that are in process. Everything that happens during a trial can affect the outcome of the case.
The Law Offices of Shannon M. Smith realizes the importance of every event that takes place during a criminal trial. Our offices handle numerous cases from Wayne, Oakland, Livingston, Macomb, and Washtenaw Counties that deal with sex crimes and criminal sexual conduct. If you are facing allegations of a sex crime or CSC, contact our office to set up a consultation.