As more and more inmates are finding ways to update their profiles from Facebook, the social media site is being asked to pull down the profiles of these criminals.
The Virginia Department of Corrections figured out that a Facebook page representing Joe Parrish was being maintained by the convict’s family outside of the prison where he is serving a 16-year sentence for involuntary manslaughter in connection with the shooting death of Tahliek Taliaferro June 20, according to CBS.
Correctional officers launched an investigation to find out how the inmate was able to post recent updates like “Had a good visit with my sister and Kara,” and “I’m good…how are you..I have my peeps working my Facebook..lol.” His Facebook profile has only 27 friends and remains up despite the discovery by the media and prison officials.
Larry Traylor, a spokesman for the Virginia Department of Corrections, told CBS affiliate WTVR that Virginia inmates are not allowed to use the Internet nor have access to cell phones.
Meanwhile, inmates in other locations continue to have social network profiles taken down. Quincy Howard, who is detained at Lee Correctional Institute in South Carolina, accumulated more than 450 friends before Facebook officials disabled his profile page this week. Howard is serving a 30-year sentence for murder.
Prison officials confiscated a cell phone from his cell earlier this month, so he was probably accessing social network from the mobile device. Someone else claimed to be updating his page last week, which violated Facebook’s rule that prisoner’s get outsiders to update their profile on their behalf, and justified the closing of his account from the social network.
From what we saw, Facebook doesn’t explicitly say that prisoners can’t have a profile page (convicted sex offenders can’t). But the site’s terms say: “You will not share your password, (or in the case of developers, your secret key), let anyone else access your account, or do anything else that might jeopardize the security of your account.” Also according to the terms, you can’t create an account for anyone other than yourself without permission.
Two other South Carolina inmates, Jabez Batiste, a 24-year-old man serving 40 years for two murders, and Jarod Wayne Tapp, serving a life sentence for rape and murder, had profiles on the social network that were disabled. However, Facebook itself didn’t acknowledge it disabled the profiles, according to the Charlotte Observer.
What would you do if you found an inmate tried to be friend you on Facebook?