In Tennessee and other states, people are familiar with social networking websites. In the past we’ve discussed how social media such as Facebook and Twitter can be used in divorce proceedings. These sites enable users to post real-time updates, even providing a “check-in” option to show where people currently are.
But just recently a man who owed child support was tracked down because of his Facebook profile updates. Police found him at a local mall after the man’s ex-wife spotted his update on his profile. The update told the man’s friends on Facebook where he was.
The man had missed child support payments, though it is unclear how much money was owed. His ex-wife was unable to find him, a task made even more difficult given the fact that he had left the state that the two had previously resided in.
But when she saw his Facebook update that stated he was working at a mall, she immediately contacted authorities who contacted police in the state where he was located. From there officers simply went to the mall, located the man, and promptly arrested him.
This may become a more common occurrence. Parents who go missing with their kids or who skip out on child or spousal support may not realize that their posts on Facebook could be their undoing. While their original intent may have been to update their friends on what is going on, a status update could lead authorities straight to them.
When a parent misses a child support payment, he or she is violating a court ordered agreement. This agreement is enforceable and could lead to a number of different penalties. But if a parent finds himself or herself in a situation where they cannot afford the payments because of a life change, they can seek an agreement modification.
Source: KPHO News: “Police: Facebook post nabs deadbead dad in Arizona,” Elizabeth Erwin, Sept. 13, 2011