Woman Arrested for Posting Undercover Cop’s Picture on Facebook

On Oct. 7, Melissa Walthall received a picture of an undercover officer from a friend who’d been arrested for possession of drugs and an illegal sawed-off shotgun. Walthall then took the picture and posted it on her Facebook page, along with the label “Undercover Mesquite Narcotics”.

After receiving a tip, authorities checked Walthall’s Facebook page and quickly issued a warrant for her arrest on harassment charges. “It’s a very serious situation,” Kevin Lawrence, executive director of the Texas Municipal Police Association stated. "If you're trying to infiltrate a cartel, a drug ring, a gang, one of the keys is people have to believe you're not an officer. Anything that hints at tying you to law enforcement is very dangerous."

Do you think there is too much opportunity for social media to be harmful? Do you think there should be some regulations on what people are allowed to post to social media accounts, such as Facebook or Twitter?

Although, social media gives ample access to expressing your own feelings and opinions, posting the picture of an undercover cop seems way too dangerous. What if that cop was in the middle of a case and his cover was blown? He could have been injured or killed because his picture was on Facebook. Or what if the person who posted the cops picture was targeted by criminals because they thought the two were somehow linked in their personal lives?

However, a cop does put his/her life at risk every day. Do you think social media is just an added risk cops take these days? Do you think there should be some regulations on what people are allowed to post when law enforcement is involved? Should cops be restricted from having their own Facebook accounts?

Posted by Lindsay Page on Oct 29, 2012


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