Massachusetts Legal Developments Blog

The Use of Digital Evidence in a Massachusetts Assault and Battery Case

With the rise of the digital world, digital evidence has become incredibly important in criminal law. In fact, most criminal trials today involve at least some digital evidence. If you have been charged with assault and battery related to a domestic dispute, you should know that the prosecution will almost certainly search for digital evidence they can use against you. But how might this digital evidence affect your case? Is digital evidence even admissible in court? How do you protect your data privacy? Let’s find out: 

What is Digital Evidence – and Why is it Important?

Examples of digital evidence include:

  • Text messages
  • Emails
  • Social media posts
  • Photos/videos saved on your phone
  • Downloaded files
  • Internet surfing history

These are just a few examples, and there are almost limitless types of digital evidence thanks to the wide-ranged nature of the internet. 

But why might digital evidence be important in your assault and battery case? In many cases of domestic violence, it’s a “he said, she said” type of situation. If there were no witnesses of the alleged violence, the prosecution might try to use digital evidence to support their claims. 

For example, they might show that you threatened the victim with text messages. They might also show that you chatted with friends and talked about how much you wanted to physically hurt the victim. 

You might have visited questionable websites – perhaps researching how to get away with certain crimes or use certain weapons. Someone might have videotaped the entire incident on their smartphone with your knowledge. There are many possibilities. 

What are Your Privacy Rights in Massachusetts?

Privacy rights on social media are not strong in Massachusetts. The general consensus is that once you post something on social media, there is “no reasonable expectation of privacy.” But there are some exceptions to the rule. Back in 2022, the Massachusetts Supreme Court expanded privacy rights for social media users. 

This came after a defendant had posted a video of himself holding a gun on Snapchat. Of course, this only applies to posts and not text messages. The Massachusetts Supreme Court was clear on this subject in 2021, stating that there is absolutely no expectation of privacy when it comes to text messages. 

What You Can Do to Protect Your Privacy Rights

You can take steps to protect your privacy in a simple way: Refuse to hand over your smartphone unless police have a warrant. It is really that simple. 

Where Can I Find a Qualified Defense Attorney in Massachusetts?

If you are facing charges of assault and battery in Massachusetts, you should get in touch with a defense attorney as soon as possible. Choose Edward R. Molari, Attorney at Law, and you can immediately get started with an effective action plan. We know that digital evidence can make or break your entire case. With our help, you can push back against digital evidence and invalidate it. We can also help you present digital evidence of your own that proves your innocence. Book your consultation today to get started with an effective action plan.