I am on Facebook and I see two people got in an argument on a public page, (not even a big one), however one of them went into crime records and is posting the guys records there in some sort of a defamation tactic. Is this legal? Can you just go and post someone's crime records?
If the criminal records are publicly available, then most likely yes, it is legal and it is not defamation. Lots of people throw the word "defamation" around and do not know what it actually means. Defamation requires an unrue state of fact. in this case, the criminal records are true and therefore, by definition, its not defamation. This is not to say, however, that it is ethical to do. Why would someone want to attempt to damage another like that?
Truth is an absolute defense to a defamation charge, and criminal records presented as they actually are are true facts. It could be a privacy violation if the facts are not public, but it sounds like these are publicly available.
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If the records are available publicly, posting is most likely free game.
The comments made here are not to be considered legal advice, nor has an attorney-client relationship been formed.
For the most part, arrests and conviction data are widely available. But there are laws governing such records by the Federal Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA). Was it legal? Who knows? It will depend on the type of information and where it was obtained. Privacy issues may be involved, but it depends on various state laws. It is not an easy yes and no answer. It may take hours to determine whether or not it was legal.
The response above is general information related to law and not intended as legal advice since it’s impracticable to provide thorough, accurate advice based upon the query without additional details. It is highly recommended that one should seek advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction by setting up a confidential meeting. Moreover, this response does not constitute the creation of an attorney-client relationship since this message is not a confidential communication because it was posted on a public website, thereby publicly disclosing the information, which is another reason to setup a confidential meeting with an attorney.
Sure. As long as these records are public records, they are accessible to all, and the publicist has not committed slander or defamation or an invasion of privacy.
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