Court sidesteps issue of social media account authentication

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Connecticut Supreme Court has sidestepped the issue of how social media accounts should be authenticated in criminal cases in a ruling upholding a murder conviction.

The court issued a 6-0 decision Monday in the appeal of Derrick Bouknight, who argued prosecutors didn’t prove a Facebook account they used as evidence was his.

Justices, instead, said evidence against Bouknight was overwhelming. They also said he didn’t prove the Facebook evidence had a substantial effect on the jury’s verdict.

Bouknight is serving a 70-year prison sentence for fatally shooting William Baines in New Haven in 2010 in a dispute over a $100 debt.

Courts elsewhere have issued varying opinions on how much proof is required to show that a social media account belongs to a defendant.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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