Deion Sanders Provides ‘Prime Time’ Social Media Case Study

By the Attorneys of Orsinger, Nelson, Downing and Anderson, LLP posted in Family Law on April 25th, 2012

In our previous post on March 20, we mentioned the perils of airing dirty laundry via Facebook and twitter. It is a growing concern in Family Law cases and at least one high-profile North Texas couple has thrust the issue into the spotlight recently. Orsinger Nelson partner Carmen Elaine Eiker was asked by the local CBS affiliate about how misuse of social media can impact a divorce.

On April 23, former Dallas Cowboys cornerback and NFL Hall of Famer Deion Sanders announced to the world his allegations that his wife, Pilar, played a part in a domestic assault against him when he tweeted: “Pray for me and my kids now! They just witnessed their mother and a friend jump me in my room. She’s going to jail n I’m pressing charges!”

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What is more concerning to some, Sanders also tweeted a picture of him and two of his children completing the police complaints describing the alleged assault. Although the photo was quickly removed from his Twitter account, the initial messages went out to Sanders’ 390,000 followers – and within minutes, a media circus commenced.

“That is the type of thing that really reveals a lot about a person and what their motivations may be in a particular suit,” Eiker told CBS 11’s Jay Gormley in the station’s April 24 coverage of the story. Eiker says that courts pay close attention to social media evidence generated by individuals involved in divorce, adding that a judge might now cast a wary eye at Deion Sanders for including his children in the media maelstrom surrounding their divorce. The familiar advice Eiker offers to anyone considering meting out social media justice while in the midst of a divorce: “Think before you post.”

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