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Facebook Mistrial: Social Websites Continue to Create Havoc

A Philadelphia juror’s Facebook post that gave a heads up to his friends about a verdict in a criminal case has caused more consternation among lawyers over whether judges need to clarify jury instructions about online communications.

A juror’s Facebook post before the verdict gave his Facebook friends a heads-up that his five months of jury service in a big trial was almost over: “Stay tuned for a big announcement on Monday everyone!”

My opinion: I don’t think there is any way to stop this. Jurors know they should not communicate with anyone about the case. A small minority will ignore these instructions. It is what it is.

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