Judge Has No Sympathy for Inmate Tricked by Cop Online

Gang member was done in by evidence he shared with a 'friend'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 11, 2019 12:07 PM CST
Robber Was Too Trusting of 'Friend,' Also an Undercover Cop
   (Getty Images/cobalt)

A California appeals court refused to grant freedom to a convicted gang robber Thursday, deciding it was his mistake to allow an undercover cop access to his social media account. Chaz Pride—part of a group who robbed a man of an iPad, gold watches, a gold chain, and $2,700 in cash in a San Diego parking lot in May 2017—claimed his right to privacy was violated by the gang unit detective Pride unknowingly allowed to view his posts on the unidentified platform, reports the San Francisco Chronicle. The detective who monitored gang activity on social media recognized the gang member with a scar on his jawline from a suspect description, then used an account Pride accepted as a "friend" to view a video of him boasting about a "new" chain, according to the ruling shared via CourtListener.com.

Pride was wearing the same chain, identified by the victim as his own, when he was arrested at his home, where the victim's debit card and jacket were also found. Guards against unreasonable police searches do not protect "voluntary communications with individuals who are secret government informers or agents," Justice Judith McConnell of the Fourth District Court of Appeal wrote. "Pride assumed the risk that the account for one of his 'friends' could be an undercover profile for a police detective." The court made no change to Pride's 21-year sentence, including 10 years for gang enhancement and six for robbery. (Don't try to rob an MMA fighter.)

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