Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Youtube Criminal Confessions

"My name is Mathew Cordle and on June 22, 2013, I hit and killed Vincent Canzani"

Photo Credit Flickr.com
Social Media is the newest form of criminal evidence.  Information gleaned from Facebook postings and other social media communications have been allowed as evidence, providing a judge believes the information is directly relevant to a case and not a blatant violation of someone’s privacy. Even if you are not knowingly the subject of a criminal investigation you should be aware that your Facebook postings are not private. Obviously whoever you have “friended” is privy to your postings depending on your privacy levels. Any of these people may easily take a screen shot of any posting you make. The same is true for text messages.  The textee can  take a screen shot of your text message and it is no longer yours to control.  Postings on other social media networks such as Twitter are similarly subject to criminal prosecution if the content is deemed threatening or otherwise suspected to be of a criminal nature.

Last week USA TODAY reported the following story about Matthew Cordle who confessed to vehicular homicide on You Tube.  To see the entire article and view the confession click here.

Matthew Cordle, 22, admits getting drunk and driving the wrong way on I-670 near Columbus, crashing into a jeep and killing its driver.

"My name is Mathew Cordle and on June 22, 2013, I hit and killed Vincent Canzani," Cordle says in the video posted Friday. "This video will act as my confession. When i get charged, I will plead guilty and take full responsibility for everything I've done to Vincent and his family... I won't dishoner Vincent's memory by lying about what happened."

Cordle says in the video that after the crash he spoke with "some high-powered attorneys" who told him that it might be possible to get his blood test thrown out. He said they told him of "about similar cases where the drivers got off. "All I would have to do is lie. I won't go down that path."

Photo Cridit Flickr.com
Canzani's ex-wife, Cheryl Oates, told fox6now.comthat Cordle's remorse appeared genuine and that she was encouraged that he took responsibility for his actions. Still, the mother of two sons said she felt Cordle should spend some time in prison. "It's gut-wrenching coming from a mother looking at that young boy, and he just doesn't understand the damage that he did," she told the website.

George Breitmayer III, a Columbus lawyer representing Cordle, told The Columbus Dispatch that he was unaware his client was posting the confession. "This video he released demonstrates his character, bravery and integrity, and I know he fully intends to cooperate with law enforcement and Franklin County prosecutors throughout the course of any future criminal proceedings," Breitmayer told the Dispatch. Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien told the Dispatch he watched Cordle's video three times. "It's the most compelling video I think I have seen. He strikes me as remorseful and sincere," O'Brien said.

O'Brien said he will ask grand jurors on Monday to indict Cordle on a charge of aggravated vehicular homicide. The second-degree felony carries a prison sentence of two to eight years.
O'Brien told fox6now that the video has not influenced him to recommend a lighter sentence.
"We had a case against him based on the evidence as I know it before the video was filmed," he told the website.

Breitmayer said the video was not posted in an effort to gain a shorter prison sentence. On the recording, Cordle says he "can't bring Mr. Canzani back. I can't erase what I've done," but says "I beg you, and I say the word beg specifically, I'm begging you, please don't drink and drive."
John Bacon, USA TODAY

If you are looking for a criminal lawyer or need defence from a DUI or auto accident contact the Law Offices of Eric A Kay. When you call the Law Offices of Eric A. Kay P.A., we will give you FREE consultation on your situation. If you retain our services, we will immediately go to work for you with one goal in mind: protecting your liberty. 

The Law Offices of Eric A. Kay, P.A.
123 S.E. 3rd Ave #252
Miami, FL 33131
Phone: (954) 330-8994
Ft. Lauderdale:
12 SE 7th St. Suite 707
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
Phone: (954) 764-7373

Click on these links, if you are interested in other posts on the topic of Social Media and Criminal Charges.
Facebook Posting Leads to Arrest, Murder Charge

 Facebook Postings Being Used in Court More Often

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