Pro Bono Barrister: Bay Ridge lawyers view social media, criminal law

When members of the Bay Ridge Lawyers Association, led by President Joann Monaco, get together for their next-CLE accredited dinner meeting, they will explore what has become a leading topic of our times: “Social Media Issues You Should Be Aware Of.”

This session gets underway promptly at 6 p.m. at Hunter’s Steak & Ale House near 94th Street in Bay Ridge.

Since the guest lecturer is Kings Criminal Court Judge Matthew Sciarrino, the participating barristers will be able to discuss various connections between the free-wielding web and associated criminal behavior.

They could hear about the misdeeds, and possible punishment of, web stalkers or the ominously growing arena of identify theft and worse.  Or they could discuss the role of web technology — Droids, iPads, etc. -- in courtrooms.

Many here will remember the controversy a year or so back when a supporter of the defendant surreptitiously used a cell camera to take the photo of a rape victim complainant while she was on the witness stand and sent it out on the Internet!

Justice John Ingram was presiding and dealt effectively with the miscreant whose foolish behavior was learned to be part of an intimidation effort being carried out against the complaining witness and her husband.

In the interests of justice and avoiding a mistrial, the Hon. Ingram avoided a possible calamity and continued the trial to its end. The jury rendered a very long 103-year sentence.

Other BRLA officers include Vice President Lisa Becker, Secretary Grace Borrino, Treasurer Stephen Spinelli and Corresponding Secretary Margaret Stanton. Immediate past president is Pasqualino Russo.