FBI is entitled to woman's Facebook posts, judge finds

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A federal judge Friday ruled that attorneys representing the FBI have a right to see Facebook posts of a woman who is suing the bureau over an allegedly misguided 2011 raid.

An attorney representing Shaquel Adams, of Bellevue, must provide to a Department of Justice attorney pages from her Facebook account, plus other documents related to the psychological and neurological care, and school performance, of members of her family, U.S. District Judge Nora Barry Fischer ruled.

She wrote that the documents were “reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence ... particularly with respect to the claim for damages for severe emotional distress” stemming from the FBI’s March 3, 2011 raid on the family’s home.

Around 15 agents seeking an alleged member of the Manchester OGs street gang entered and searched the Adams’ house in an effort to find a former resident, not affiliated with the family, who had lived there around two years before.

Eleven residents sued numerous FBI agents. The residents’ attorney, Timothy P. O’Brien, had argued that requests for records including social networking postings were a new invasion of their privacy.

“While the Court acknowledges that discovery of such matters is intrusive and regards personal matters which are typically not shared publicly, by asserting claims seeking damages for their emotional distress allegedly sustained during the events of March 3, 2011, Plaintiffs have put their own mental health, therapy and school records at issue in this case,” the judge wrote.

Rich Lord: rlord@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1542. Twitter: @richelord.

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