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Mental health defense may be appropriate in some cases

The widespread use of the internet has changed the lives of people around the world. While it can be a useful tool to get people out of difficult situations, it can also lead people into situations they might otherwise not be in. A 20-year-old woman Virginia Beach woman learned this the hard way.

The woman is accused of killing her 49-year old mother this past summer. After he mother’s death, law enforcement executed a search warrant and recovered some knives. One of those knives had been memorialized on several social media accounts the woman used. She also allegedly posted a note she wrote on her Tumbler account. That letter references “taking matters into her own hands.”

The mental health of the accused woman is in question and is the subject of a competency hearing taking place later this month. The woman’s lawyer indicates her defense will be based on the status of her mental health.

It is possible that evidence on social media accounts could be used against her, at trial. To be viable, certain guidelines must have been followed in its collection. It is also possible that is could be used by her attorney to bolster her mental health defense. 

While there is no question that someone who has been accused of murder needs a criminal defense lawyer, regardless of the criminal charge someone faces, it is a good idea to seek assistance with a charge. The reason for this is the serious consequences that someone who is convicted of certain crimes could face.

How this matter will be resolved remains to be seen. We will provide updates as they become available.

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