Why Bonnaroo Participants Need to Be Aware of Social MediaThe Bonnaroo festival is around the corner. In just a few weeks, tens of thousands of tourists will join local Manchester, Tennessee residents in several days of great music and fun. The festival is a place where all visitors can relax and enjoy having a good time. For some visitors, though, the festival can become a ticket to criminal charges.

Many different types of criminal acts may be committed at Bonnaroo. Some of the most common charges include theft, sexual assault, underage drinking, driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics, and possession and sales of narcotics.

There are many practical suggestions for those who attend the festival: stay sober, avoid intercourse, and stay away from drugs. One new suggestion is that people who go to these festivals should understand the dangers of social media. For better or worse, you should know that there is little expectation or respect for privacy these days.

In the blink of eye, your picture can be taken by someone you know (or someone you don’t know). The photos and videos can then be uploaded to Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Snapchat, and all sorts of social media accounts. If you’re smoking weed, drinking a bottle of beer, getting too close to someone, or doing anything illegal at all, your conduct can be uploaded.

The danger of uploaded photos is that the photos can be used against you in several ways. The photos can lead to criminal charges if the police are alerted to them. Many times, the police won’t have a strong case, but the introduction of a photo can convince a judge that there is evidence you committed a crime. Your employer may become aware of the photo. If you have any type of morals clause in an employment contract, you may lose your job. If you are convicted of a crime, you may lose your job.

Many times, the worst “influencer” isn’t someone else – it’s you, the defendant. It’s tempting when going to Bonnaroo to post pictures and write comments about your experiences. Attendees need to understand that what they post can be seen by many others who may report you. More likely, the prosecution may have other reasons to believe you committed a crime. They may then search your social media accounts for verification of the crime.

Possible defenses to social media photos and text

Defense lawyers may be able to suppress these photos and any statements on the grounds you can’t incriminate yourself or that the police need judicial authority (a warrant) to search your private accounts. Still, practical common sense is often the best strategy. If you don’t post to social media, there’s nothing for anyone to object to. If you don’t misbehave at the festival, there shouldn’t be anything bad to post.

For help with any criminal charges brought for your conduct at Bonnaroo, understand that you need experienced criminal defense lawyers. The lawyers at the Law Offices of Adrian H. Altshuler understand how Bonnaroo related criminal offenses are tried. We work aggressively to have charges dismissed or to arrange fair plea agreement. We also defend you rights in court if the case proceeds to trial. We have offices in Franklin, Columbia and Brentwood. Please phone 615-977-9370 or complete the contact form to speak with a trusted defense lawyer.