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Show ALL Forums  > Relationships  > For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner i      Home login  
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 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 101
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheatingPage 5 of 15    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15)

That might be the case when battling it out in divorce court. But we are speaking here of hacking or snooping in computer files,or using spyware/keylogger program to obtain information that one spouse did not give the other.

If a computer is community property, it's jointly owned and either spouse is legally able to install (or remove) whatever is on it.

There are lots of spouses of both genders who keep a secret little emergency account, mostly to aid themselves in case of needing to get away from an abusive spouse- or if some wrongdoing on the part of the spouse causes the couple's joint accounts to be frozen by law enforcement or the IRS.

Wow - that could get you in real trouble. Your seperate accounts aren't neccessarily seperate property and trying to hide money by squirreling it away in a secret account could easily be construed as fraud if you withheld information about it in a divorce proceeding (or especially if you're dealing with the IRS, who decides who is and isn't liable for payment of taxes.) I would imagine the IRS would simply freeze all of the accounts and let the tax court settle the issue. If a spouse wishes to do that, I think it would be prudent to consult an attorney to avoid digging one's self into a legal hole.

I just read the section in the Texas Family Code on seperate and community property and although a spouse doesn't have a legal right to trabsfer money from a spouse's seperate account by virtue of being married, the money in that account is not seperate property by virtue of being in a seperate account.

What becomes of that money once divorce has been filed may well be the purview of the divorce court-I'm talking about a spouse having no legal barrier to keep them from hacking into the account and moving it to another bank or using some other method of moving the funds into his or her possession.

There is a legal barrier to doing that. It's called fraud. If you can't legally transfer the money by walking down to the bank and doing it legally, you can't legally transfer it legally any other way either. On the other hand, if you can legally transfer money from a joint account to a seperate account your spouse cannot access and doesn't know about (like the secret one in your example) , that money doesn't become seperate by virtue of of souse's inability to legally transfer the money out of that account or that you aren't under any obligation to disclose the existence of that account. I would think that could also be construed as fraud.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 102
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/6/2011 4:23:26 PM
I'm not speaking of a massive stash of cash in a Swiss account here,I'm talking about a personal rainy day fund.
If a divorce is in process, I'm not suggesting that the money be concealed or excluded from anybody.
Many many counselors and legal advisers who work with abused spouses-especially women-suggest that some money be kept somewhere accessible to the spouse being battered and not known or available to the batterer. Not talking about defrauding anybody, simply a little cushion for self-preservation if one is concerned that self-preservation might become a necessity.
I realize there are people here who've been cheated on or have had to fight tooth and nail to prevent a divorce from putting them in the poorhouse. But believe me, my experience in social work and some closehand personal observation has shown me that often an abused spouse is also FINANCIALLY abused or exploited and having a few bucks to hire a taxi and stay in a motel for a few days while one sets their permanent escape in motion could save someone's life.
I'm talking about survival here, not fraud or the IRS. As for installing spyware or keyloggers, fine-but what about using that information to hack into someones' private email-especially that stored on a server-or to cause funds in an individual bank account to be removed from that account,when quick accessibility was the whole POINT of this little rainy day fund?
I also wonder what the tone of this discussion would be had a woman hacked into her ex-or "soon to be" ex husbands email and tried to use material found there to influence the financial/child custody negotiations?
To me, having a spouse given free rein to surreptitiously access their partner's email accounts during a contentious divorce proceeding comes damn close to stalking.
Cindy O
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 103
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/6/2011 6:24:27 PM

I'm not speaking of a massive stash of cash in a Swiss account here,I'm talking about a personal rainy day fund.

The legal system is funny about that sort of thing. You can't just give a whimsical rule of thumb like ``massive stash of cash'' and ``rainy day fund'' and let th jury vote on it. The jury doesn't rule on matters of law. The jury only decides what the facts are, so absent any legal distinction between $10 and $10,000, the jury only decides if money was or wasn't legally transferred. They don't get to decide whether or not they think the law wasn't meant to apply to $X but was to $Y unless that is a fact the statute requires them to determine. You actually have to spell out what that means in a statute if you want to make a distinction. The more you expect the law to intervene in your personal bullshit, the more complicated your life is going to be.

<div class="quote">As for installing spyware or keyloggers, fine-but what about using that information to hack into someones' private email-especially that stored on a server-or to cause funds in an individual bank account to be removed from that account,when quick accessibility was the whole POINT of this little rainy day fund?
I've already covered the question of transferring funds. If a person can't legally transfer funds out of an account, it isn't legal to transfer the funds whether it's done in person at the bank or done at home using a computer. That isn't even relevant, since proper authorization is being on a signature card or having a court order.

What computer is he charged with accessing without authorization? His home computer? I find it hard to imagine how anyone would think it illegal to do whatever you want to your own computer. In this case, the computer is jointly owned, so whatever is on there ought to be fair game for either spouse to obtain. (How do you expect to decide which bytes on the disk belong to him and which belong to his wife?) If he's accused of unauthorized access to his own computer, the prosecutor ought to be sanctioned.

If you read the law under which he's being charged, prosecuting him for unauthorized access to his own computer would make it illegal to defragment the disks, since there is no provision spelling out what exceptions should be allowed for maintenance. (cf the ecpa which applies to communications carriers, in which exceptions ARE spelled out for things like system maintenance and administrative functions.) You can't defragment a disk unless the defragmentation program reads the disk, which is presumably on place the passwords might have been found. If the law doesn't allow you to do whatever you want to your own computer, you are asking for a legal nightmare.

However, he claims the passwords were on some paper, so is he charged with unauthorized access to the gmail server? I didn't see that he was. Gmail's terms of service state specifically that the account holder is responsible all activity that occurs in an account, including the security of the passwords. Gmail's terms of service don't give her any expectation of privacy beyond that which she could expect through securing her own passwords. Exactly which computer was he supposed to have misused?

At some point, people have to be responsible for themselves and deal with this sort of personal bullshit on their own instead of expecting the law to spell out personal boundaries in relationships. I want my fiancee to be able to get my email in case I need her to do that and I don't think I should have to keep a legal signed document on file to make that legal. I don't want to have to check a statute to see if I'm allowed to fix my own computer without having my wife sign off on it. (On a windows system, this makes even less sense, given that windows is not even a real multiuser operating system.) If others want to do something different, deal with it without getting the police involved. The police have more important things to deal with than squabbles over who can read what on a jointly owned home computer.
 cap_n_mORGAN
Joined: 7/3/2009
Msg: 104
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 6:43:41 AM

I didn't make an analogy.


Didn't you?


I agree that a lot of people need to go to court to divide the assets; I just think that in court, the fact that a person cheated should not necessarily cost him/her money. I gave an example of why that should not be the case. If a person is abused, he/she can make a criminal complaint, and the abuser might to jail. If the couple then gets divorced, I don't think the abuser is generally stripped of his financial assets, so why should this happen to a cheater?



noun, plural -gies.
1.
a similarity between like features of two things, on which a comparison may be based: the analogy between the heart and a pump.
2.
similarity or comparability: I see no analogy between your problem and mine.


Seems to me you compared the cheater to the abuser in this post.


That applies to any divorcing couple who cannot get their act together and decide that it is better to compromise than to hand over thousands (and more!) to lawyers. They let their feelings get the better of their common sense. That does not apply more so to cheaters, or abusers. It's applies to any couple.


My point exactly they may or may not lose. Whom they loose it to is of no account. Lawyer or bank.....Does it matter it is still gone.


Not even close. Few abusers go to jail, and I am sure even you must be aware criminal law and divorce law are different. Show me that abusers come out as losers FINANCIALLY in DIVORCE. You can't because it is not true. People who go around crying foul that they were cheated on can do so without fear, and in some places they get rewarded for it. Abuse victims are not rewarded FINANCIALLY, and many fear to even bring charges.


Prisons and jails are full of them. I did not say the victims are rewarded I said the abuser would loose their assets if they go to prison.



I mean that you misquoted that quote. Nothing else. Anything else you say, you are making up.


You are giving me credit for a phrase that has been on the net for years. Used in news papers and other news outlets for years before that. Thank you.......Does that come with royalties?
 2nd_chance_again
Joined: 12/6/2010
Msg: 105
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 8:39:54 AM
I have a friend that snooped & wished he hadn't! Found out all & couldn't give it up, kept going, hired private detective, tracking devise, the whole 9 yrds only for her to leave in the end. What did he think was going to happen? It caused he to be close to mental break! Still to this day, doesn't think it had anything to do with him, OMG, how stupid is he? Still in denial, people need to take responsibilities for their actions! Live & Learn... now he has a problem with his daughter sending pic on phone & ignores it... LIVE & LEARN...!!!!!!
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 106
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 8:59:36 AM

I have a friend that snooped & wished he hadn't!

Really? He found out his partner was cheating on him and he wishes he hadn't? I really never have understood how anyone can actually think not knowing something makes it go away.
 niagara45
Joined: 8/15/2010
Msg: 107
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 9:57:07 AM
I didn't make an analogy.

..................................

Didn't you?


No. You seem to think every comparison is an analogy. Wrong. Re-read what you yourself posted, and it should be clear to you. Or, don't. I don't really care. You are misinformed (again).


My point exactly they may or may not lose. Whom they loose it to is of no account. Lawyer or bank.....Does it matter it is still gone.


It matters a great deal if one person loses a larger share of what he/she has worked for ONLY because he/she cheated. The penalty for cheating is that you lose your marriage. You shouldn't also be robbed of what's yours in court. You disagree. Fine.


Prisons and jails are full of them.


Prisons and jails are full of killers, drug dealers, weapon dealers, rapists, thieves, and batterers (not necessarily of their domestic partners). In many cases abuse charges are a misdemeanor until about the third offense. For a misdemeanor, incarceration is often between 30-120 days, so I seriously doubt the "prisons are full of them".


I did not say the victims are rewarded I said the abuser would loose their assets if they go to prison.


First, that is not always the case. Second, you brought it up as if it proves something. It has nothing to do with the fact that is is unfair for people who cheat to be financially penalized in a divorce, when lots of people break the OTHER very important parts of the vows with NO financial penalty.


You are giving me credit for a phrase that has been on the net for years. Used in news papers and other news outlets for years before that. Thank you.......Does that come with royalties?


Nope. You just get to show everyone how smart you are every time you use it.
 cap_n_mORGAN
Joined: 7/3/2009
Msg: 108
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 10:18:55 AM

No. You seem to think every comparison is an analogy. Wrong. Re-read what you yourself posted, and it should be clear to you. Or, don't. I don't really care. You are misinformed (again).


Please check the synonyms for analogy.



It matters a great deal if one person loses a larger share of what he/she has worked for ONLY because he/she cheated. The penalty for cheating is that you lose your marriage. You shouldn't also be robbed of what's yours in court. You disagree. Fine.


So a person shouldn't be robbed in court. So someone that has worked hard made a good living for their spouse should just hand over half because their spouse cheated?

That seems to go against your logic of a person shouldn't be robbed in court.

Would you accept a business partner cheating on the books taking money from the business and still agree to giving them half?

Yes it is a analogy yes it is a logically fallacious. But it still shows how splitting the assets down the middle with a cheater!




<div class="quote">e:
I didn't make an analogy.

..................................

Didn't you?



No. You seem to think every comparison is an analogy. Wrong. Re-read what you yourself posted, and it should be clear to you. Or, don't. I don't really care. You are misinformed (again).



My point exactly they may or may not lose. Whom they loose it to is of no account. Lawyer or bank.....Does it matter it is still gone.


It matters a great deal if one person loses a larger share of what he/she has worked for ONLY because he/she cheated. The penalty for cheating is that you lose your marriage. You shouldn't also be robbed of what's yours in court. You disagree. Fine.


Prisons and jails are full of them.


Prisons and jails are full of killers, drug dealers, weapon dealers, rapists, thieves, and batterers (not necessarily of their domestic partners). In many cases abuse charges are a misdemeanor until about the third offense. For a misdemeanor, incarceration is often between 30-120 days, so I seriously doubt the "prisons are full of them".



I did not say the victims are rewarded I said the abuser would loose their assets if they go to prison.



First, that is not always the case. Second, you brought it up as if it proves something. It has nothing to do with the fact that is is unfair for people who cheat to be financially penalized in a divorce, when lots of people break the OTHER very important parts of the vows with NO financial penalty.


So if someone has the ability to retain their assets as I did they are bad because they use the information.
The marriage has dissolved way before you get to the divorce so with the marriage and love gone the contract of marriage is all that is left.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 109
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 11:07:34 AM

I don’t think that ladyc4 was suggesting perpetrating fraud on the court. She seemed to mean that one spouse should have the right to secretly amass wealth, and it is not fraud to amass wealth your spouse is unaware of.

I wan't even speaking of "amassing wealth", I was talking about couples who do maintain separate accounts for 'mad money', an individual rainy day fund, or an abused spouse creating an "escape fund", particularly if the abuse includes the abuser having a stranglehold on family purse strings(yes, even working women in abusive marriages are often bullied into putting every cent they earn into running the household).
And I believe the charge filed against this man was "felony misuse of a computer" it had nothing to do with who owned the computer and where it was located. He could just as easily gone to the library, or used a friends' computer, and used the password to access her email account, because the mail is stored on a server that belongs to Google/Gmail. The computer he used may have belonged to him, but the email account did not. The ex-wife alleges that she did NOT ever give him the password or leave it in an accessible location, her contention is that he HACKED into her email. Whatever else you want to say about it, that is a violation of privacy. It's my position that even spouses are entitled to some privacy, I know that I never went through my late DHs' wallet, it was HIS responsibility to empty pockets , and he didn't go through my purse, or my dresser drawers. Oddly enough, we shared an email account-and a cell phone.
Cindy O
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 110
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 11:25:17 AM
He was not charged with unauthorized access to his pc. He was charged with unauthorized access to his wife’s private e-mail account.

No, he was not. He was charged with fraudulent access to a computer. He's being charged under Michigan statute 752.795:


FRAUDULENT ACCESS TO COMPUTERS, COMPUTER SYSTEMS, AND COMPUTER NETWORKS Act 53 of 1979:

A person shall not intentionally and without authorization or by exceeding valid authorization do any of the following:

(a) Access or cause access to be made to a computer program, computer, computer system, or computer network to acquire, alter, damage, delete, or destroy property or otherwise use the service of a computer program, computer, computer system, or computer network.

(b) Insert or attach or knowingly create the opportunity for an unknowing and unwanted insertion or attachment of a set of instructions or a computer program into a computer program, computer, computer system, or computer network, that is intended to acquire, alter, damage, delete, disrupt, or destroy property or otherwise use the services of a computer program, computer, computer system, or computer network. This subdivision does not prohibit conduct protected under section 5 of article I of the state constitution of 1963 or under the first amendment of the constitution of the United States.

History: 1979, Act 53, Eff. Mar. 27, 1980 ;-- Am. 1996, Act 326, Eff. Apr. 1, 1997


See any references in there about ``reading wife's email'' or even email? Which computer is he charged with fraudulently accessing? His own or the gmail servers? Now that we've cleared that up...

Gmail’s terms of service are not the issue. The issue is whether she had an expectation of privacy vis a vis her soon to be ex husband. And unless she GAVE him the password(s) or explicit authority to use it(them), he has no right to go digging through her e-mail.

Her expectation of privacy is what gmail gives her reason to expect. They could run their mail server without passwords and have it be a free-for-all if that's what they chose to do.

Now that you've read the statute, it ought to be clear that the charge is fradulent access to a computer and the fact that he accessed his wife's email is only relevant insofar as his wife's email is the evidence of the fraudulent access. (1) Gmail determines who is and isn't authorized to access whatever they wish in whatever way they wish. They have to create some expectation of privacy before she can expect it. (2) Gmail also decides what her responsibility is regarding giving out her passwords. They could just as easily not authorize her to share her password with anyone, in which case sharing it would violate at least the computer misuse statute in Texas. But, instead, they placed the burden for securing access to her email on her.

That’s all the law has ever done - spelled out boundaries in relationships.

You are prevaricating by eliminating the word ``personal'' which I used to qualify the type of relationship in order to use ``relationship'' to mean just about anything. If you want the legal system to turn every personal decision in your personl relationships into the type of contractual relationship you deal with in the business world, you're probably in the minority.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 111
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 11:53:47 AM
The man is charged with "felony misuse of a computer". The statute was meant primarily to deal with identity theft,"phishing" to steal information, or to steal corporate information. But there is nothing in those 5 words about fraud, about email, about fraudulent access to anything,or whether using "your own" computer ameliorates the offense. Apparently 2 judges thus far have upheld the action by refusing to dismiss the charges.
Cindy O
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 112
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/7/2011 1:53:18 PM
His conduct meets every element if his soon to be ex wife did not grant him authorization.

The author of the statute doesn't seem to think so. Even if the statute was intended to be construed that way, the question of whether or not he had authorization in the legal sense would be a fact left to the jurors to decide along with which of those other elements were met. There is also the question of property. She hasn't been deprived of any property by virtue of him reading the email, so he couldn't have acquired any property of hers.

Her expectations are the same as any other reasonable person

Her expectations were spelled out in the terms of service which you said weren't relevant. That is the reason the terms of service are relevant. The prosecution wasn't instigated on behalf of gmail, so apparently he isn't being charged with unauthorized access to gmail's mail servers.

I’d call all of that “personal bullshit in which the law spells out personal boundaries”.

Just because the government has already invaded our private lives isn't an argument for it to do so even further. If anything, you just listed a number of things the government should stop interferring with.

Apparently 2 judges thus far have upheld the action by refusing to dismiss the charges.

Refusing to dismiss the charges doesn't mean they've upheld anything. It means that they are willing to let the matter be decided in court and through the appeals process. That would be desirable for a test case where there's a gray area because in lieu of legislative clarification, an appellate ruling on this case would be useful as a precedent. The most you can infer from that is that the judges think there is something to decide. It's not a murder case where it's clear what there is to decide.
 cooldude
Joined: 4/26/2004
Msg: 113
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 7:26:46 AM
Something like this is very hard to prove. A lot of people have their passwords saved in the browser to automatically enter it for you when they access it. If they use more then one web browser to assess email complicates this even further.


And if he argues express authorization he can kiss his backside goodbye. Who is going to believe that a cheating wife, or a wife who was contemplating cheating, would give ANYBODY her password?


It could of happened after the fact. Some spouses may not cheat unless the opportunity presents itself. He could of been doing routine maintenance on it for years and then she started cheating afterwards.


Nope. He’s a goner. Betcha a nickel that he pleads guilty before trial and takes a deal. He’s not going to gamble with a year and a day prison sentence. The case was over when the judge decided the law was close enough to the facts for a jury to hear.


Highly doubt it.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 114
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 1:28:14 PM
Why does it matter about whether the people involved were likeable or whatever. If you murder someone it doesn't matter if it was a preacher or a homeless drunk-unless you were defending yourself from imminent danger at their hands, it's still murder.
Is it somehow more "OK" for someone to rob the home of a wealthy family,because they have more than they need?

However much we might dislike the woman and object to her cheating, the man DID go into an email account,unauthorized, that was not his, nor one shared with his wife, gathered information and tried to use it against her for matters of child custody. Basically, he somehow accessed her email and tried to use what he found there to have her children taken away.
Cindy O
 OSUguy99
Joined: 4/8/2009
Msg: 115
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 3:07:04 PM
its simply a question of how does a cheating partners word have any validity in court. never should have made it to court. isnt a big part of being a lawyer attacking the credibility of witnesses. from my view a cheating spouse has no credibility, but being a woman shell go to court, squirt some tears, and this poor guys probably going to jail. for what. invading his wifes privacy to protect himself from stds or possible physical harm from someone he suspected his wife was with. if this case does anything, it should give a spouse the right to invade privacy in a case like this.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 116
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 3:27:14 PM

invading his wifes privacy to protect himself from stds or possible physical harm from someone he suspected his wife was with.

No, he was doing it to take her children away from her.
If he was really all that worried, he could have hired an investigator to surveil her. A report and/or video from an investigation service would have been far less questionable than snooping in her email. If he had surveillance video showing that she took the children with her when she visited this abusive ex-husband/current lover, that would be very difficult to fight, I would think.
Cindy O
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 117
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 3:36:44 PM

Even if there is such a person as you suggest, and even if he holds the opinion you say he does, the law is the law, not one person’s opinion.

If you had bothered to read anything about the case, you'd know there are at least two such people:

------------------
Chuck Perricone, the former speaker of the state house who previously sponsored an amendment to the legislation, told the Oakland Press said he intended the legislation to prevent indentity theft and hacking that could result in other crimes, such as credit card fraud.
------------------

Rep. Tom McMillin, R-Rochester Hills, has this to say:

“It’s hard to believe Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper would waste significant taxpayer money on this situation,” ... "Since it appears at least one prosecutor in the state can't see that, I'll introduce legislation early next year to clarify ... the obvious."
------------------

Since you seem to think the relevant part of the statute is

But per 53(a), he:
intentionally and without authorization accessed a computer program or system to acquire property

Can you tell me exactly which computer program or system he is charged with accessing and what property he he has acquired? In the context of what Perricone, the person who sponsored the bill says the statute was intended to do, the statute makes perfect sense and it's easy to identify what property is being acquired and what is being accessed without authorization. So far, you haven't identified either of those two things here.

But - by conceding that the determination of these issues should be left to a finder of fact, you are agreeing that the statute applies and that the case should proceed to trial.

Uh, no I am not. Obviously a proecutor and defense attorney are going to disagree about points of law and if prosecutor convinces a judge that the law applies to the case being filed, then the defendant has no choice but to go to trial and hope to overturn the rulings on matters of law at the appellate level. That happens all the time where the law is not clear or worse, that the law is thought to be unconstitutional.

Upheld? Has a constitutional challenge been brought? I didn’t see that mentioned anywhere.

I was using the language ladyc4 used in her post. If you want the context, read her post.

No. Her expectations were a reasonable understanding of the privacy which is afforded by password protected programs.

I disagree. A password program only verifies what someone knows. It is impossible for a password program to verify who someone is.

What about murder cases which require a determination of intent?

That's a fact for the jury to decide. The only place intent enters as a matter of law is in the prosecutor's decision on what charges to bring. A judge only rules on matters of law under which the charges were brought.

He accessed it. His access was intentional. He acquired her property.

Accessed what? The statute requires access to a system. Which system do you think he's charged with accessing. (Is that the same system the prosecutor has charged him with accessing? There's two possibilities here.) What property did he acquire? The property only makes sense in the way the statute was apparently intended - i.e., to protect trade secrets and prevent identity theft, since in those cases, you can identify the property being acquired. What property did he acquire? As far as I know, an email itselfis not property. An email containing a trade secret might be proprty because the trade secret is the property. Here, I see nothing that falls under the legal definition of property and I see nothing in the law which defines it as such.

Spouses would searching spouse's pockets, wallets and file cabinets for years to come. Good luck with that.

Spouses already do that. Talk to any divorce lawyer. Here in Texas, divorce attorneys regularly obtain information from toll booths to pin down where spouses were at specific times as evidence of cheating.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 118
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 4:02:07 PM

The 33-year-old Mr. Walker, who is employed as an IT technician, has been charged with felony computer misuse

While I'm sure there are subchapters covering various terminologies and whatnot, the charge is felony computer misuse, with no mention made of accessing systems or acquiring property. What I gather this is all about, from skimming through some news articles, is that the husband copied emails, involved a 3rd party(another of the woman's previous husbands) and this was all done in aid of leverage in child custody/child support. What it boils down to is the latest ex-husband is trying to take his ex-wife's children away from her,claiming concern that the children "might be exposed to her current lover(yet another ex-husband) abusing her...apparently there is a history of the current lover being charged with domestic violence.
Cindy O
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 119
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 5:47:09 PM
While I'm sure there are subchapters covering various terminologies and whatnot, the charge is felony computer misuse, with no mention made of accessing systems or acquiring property.

Regardless of how the newspaper reported it or whatever colloquial wording was used, the statute under which he was charged was listed explicitly and I quoted it as it reads on the Michigan state legislative website. If you don't see how to turn that statute into the misuse you understood from whatever else you read, welcome to the club. The bottom line is that if the statute can't be credibly stretched beyond what the sponsor of the legislation claims was the law's intent, then that's it. If the prosecutor could have found another statute that made prosecution easier than the one under which she filed the charge, she most certainly would have done so. If you are sure there are ``subchapters'' or whatever, please find them. I looked and I posted what I found.

The fact that the defendant ditched his original attorney, retained Geoffrey Fieger and set up a website for a defense fund would seem to indicate he's in it for the long haul and not interested in pleading out. I doubt he would have sought Fieger out if all he wanted to do was plead. I'd bet Fieger sought him out and took the case for it's pr value.

What it boils down to is the latest ex-husband is trying to take his ex-wife's children away from her,claiming concern that the children "might be exposed to her current lover(yet another ex-husband) abusing her...apparently there is a history of the current lover being charged with domestic violence.

I doubt those things are actually relevant to the statute beyond making it clear to the jury that there's no property being acquired. There's no law that covers ``reading wife's email'' much less allowing for circumstances that would be considered exceptions. In this case the prosecutor is trying to stretch the meaning of the statute to make it fit the husband's actions because there is no law making what he did illegal.
 ladyc4
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 120
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 6:33:40 PM

I'd bet Fieger sought him out and took the case for it's pr value.

I wouldn't bet against you on this.

No, there may not have been property being 'acquired', but I would think that trying to deprive her of the custody of her children could be considered to be an action harmful to her.

Without parsing every single action Feiger has taken, I have to tell you I LIVE in Michigan and there have been significant things that Feiger has sought after and LOST.
Cindy O
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 121
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 9:06:24 PM
No, there may not have been property being 'acquired', but I would think that trying to deprive her of the custody of her children could be considered to be an action harmful to her.

That wouldn't hold water. If she's unfit and would lose custody of her kids because of what she is doing, she isn't entitled to custody of her kids by virtue of hiding her actions from the court who determines who is legally entitled to custody. If she isn't entitled to them, she can't be deprived of anything.

Without parsing every single action Feiger has taken, I have to tell you I LIVE in Michigan and there have been significant things that Feiger has sought after and LOST.

Sure, but if Fieger is taking the case for pr reasons, the DA will actually be forced to argue the case on a level playing field in terms of resources. The prospect of going to trial and going through appeals might dampen the prosecutor's enthusiasm if she is overreaching. Given the legislative history and the comments about amending the statute to make an explicit examption for spouses reading each other's email, I don't see how the prosecutor could not think she's overreaching. Just to get a conviction, she's going to need 12 jurors to agree he committed a crime and from what I can tell, the just trying to explain to the jurors what the actual crime is going to be a challenge, since there is nothing in the statute that has any obvious relevance to this case without stretching the legal definitions of property and what unauthorized access means. So far, no one has even been able to tell me what system he accessed without authorization or what property he acquired.
 karma1160
Joined: 6/10/2008
Msg: 122
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/10/2011 10:27:45 PM
I can't imagine what it would be like to be a divorce lawyer ouyvey.
Why does the whole world suddenly think, they have to rein in on people's personal lives and set up rules for people who are adults?
I have heard of judges telling couples to not waste his time with pissing contests about who did what to who.
Personally it is not suit worthy in my mind, but if you don't mind wasting 5 grand on this whole drama quest go for it.

Another question is: who in their right mind would keep all that stuff on their computer if they were trying to hide things?

On the other hand, If one spends their time looking at their spouse emails, they must be pretty darn controlling or suspicous. Comunication would have been a lot cheaper and a lot faster.
 cooldude
Joined: 4/26/2004
Msg: 123
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/11/2011 2:25:07 AM

No, there may not have been property being 'acquired', but I would think that trying to deprive her of the custody of her children could be considered to be an action harmful to her.


If she lost custody of her children it was due to her own actions. If she was cheating and got caught, she gets to live with the consequences.

As that particular law was written, it is hard to prove that the information contained in the email is actual property that has some type of monetary value. Considering it was originally written for cyber criminals looking for monetary gain.

I could see an email that contains pin numbers, bank account numbers, financial data. Something like that would have monetary value.

Then you have to consider the laptop itself, is it jointly shared? Even if it is hers and she lets him use it, even just for routine maintenance, can still be considered a shared computer. So its reasonable to assume some lack of privacy is going to occasionally happen.
 cooldude
Joined: 4/26/2004
Msg: 124
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/11/2011 6:25:50 AM

I see email as having the potential of real mail and replacing real mail so much that it needs to be given some of real mails protections in the law.

this case is a start in the right direction.

you need direct permission to open someone else's mail even if that mail is sent through a business to a business.
email needs similar protection.


Regular mail & email are still very much different, in how their accessed, read & replied too. A physical letter we have no doubt who it belongs too, its printed right on the envelope.

Email on a shared family computer opens up so many questions that laws would be very hard to address. Web browser based mail, many web browsers auto save user names and passwords without user intervention, allowing anyone to read it.
A single computer allows multiple user accounts, so if someone forgets to logout of their account, might allow other people to open up Microsoft mail thinking its their own mail.

So how do you write laws to cover every little problem that comes up on email and also the computers they are used on?
As well as the constantly changing technology which happens very quickly, laws will be much slower in changing making current laws outdated.
 motown cowgirl
Joined: 6/30/2010
Msg: 125
For those that have no qualms snooping to find out if their partner is cheating
Posted: 1/11/2011 6:46:43 AM
going back to the original post (didn't read all the other stuff), i see this as just another case of a bitter divorce and both parties taking every action within their power to not only keep score but one-up the other. happens all the time.

basically, the guy made a terribly lame excuse ("child abuse" [:eyeroll:].... wow saying that phrase justifies almost anything doesn't it? hey just ask janet reno) to look at her emails without permission, and the woman is creating additional unnecessary drama by actually pursuing this in a court of law. jesus, that prosecutor must not have much of a life either. she got what she wanted... the divorce... so WTF.

two idiots (make that three) that just need to get on with their lives. what a horror to think their domestic spat could actually become the basis for stare decisis in a court of law.
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