Facebook Consequences

Aug 8, 2012 by

This web site has featured several articles concerning the fact that social media websites have been cited as a big factor in many recent divorces in the United States and around the world.. Popular social media websites like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Flickr, Photobucket and others have become the latest battlegrounds in divorce and child-support contests due to the fact that Attorneys and private investigators can so easily find incriminating evidence on the Internet. Last year, over three quarters of the attorneys surveyed in an American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers study said they had seen an increase in cases involving evidence gleaned from social media.
Now, a story coming from Grand Rapids, Michigan illustrates the point in a more direct and personal manner as it details just how easily a few photos posted on Facebook can have serious and lasting consequences. The fact that Richard Barton Jr. of Grand Rapids, Michigan posted photographs of his second wedding on his Facebook page was not a problem in itself. The problem was that he was already married to another woman at the time.

Barton and his first wife, Adina Quarto, have a six-year-old son, but had been estranged for several years. The couple had discussed getting a divorce a few times over the years, but no action was ever taken. In 2010 Barton became engaged to a woman who thought he was divorced. He then unfriended his first wife on Facebook and married the other woman. The real trouble started when Barton posted the photos of the second wedding to his Facebook profile. It appears that unfortunately for Mr. Barton, he forgot to change the privacy settings on his Facebook profile to disallow his first wife to see the photos of recent gala beach wedding. Although she was no longer one of his Facebook friends, Quarto was easily able to view the wedding photos of a happy couple that included her current husband.

The state police said it wasn’t Quarto’s intention to get her husband arrested, but since she was technically still married to him she contacted the police in an attempt to figure out what she should do. Barton was then arrested on felony polygamy charges that carry a sentence of up to four-years in prison and a potential fine of $5,000. Those are pretty serious consequences resulting from what started out as an everyday Facebook profile posting. People do dumb stuff all the time, but posting photos that prove you are a criminal on your Facebook profile page is beyond stupid. And in Mr. Barton’s case, it looks like he will be getting two divorces as a result of forgetting to complete the first one.


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