Every Two Marriages May Fail, But Intimate Photos Last Forever

Every Two Marriages May Fail, But Intimate Photos Last Forever

A photo may be worth a thousand words, but that does not mean its clear and convincing evidence. While married the defendant took intimate photos and videos of the plaintiff. Upon divorce the plaintiff wanted to make sure those photos were not made public, so she got a court order forbidding them from being distributed. Now those photos and videos have reached the Internet and the plaintiff wants justice.

Claudia Spriggs and Thomas Davis ended their marriage in 2005. As part of the divorce decree, Davis was forbidden from sharing, showing or distributing any photos or videos he had of Spriggs. If Davis was at anytime found to have violated the order, he would face sanctions from the court.

A month after the divorce, Spriggs received emails containing links to adult websites that contained photos and videos of her. She originally did not know the source of the photos and videos, but eventually filed contempt charges against Davis, claiming he leaked the photos in violation of the court order.

As part of the discovery for the case the sides were ordered to produce every computer they had access to from 2003 to the time of the case. The production order was granted in June 2006, with instructions to comply within 10 days, Davis finally complied in May 2007. When Davis’ computers were finally reviewed there was evidence of an Evidence Eraser program on the computer.

Even with the delay in production and the showing of the Evidence Eraser program a Magistrate Judge held that Davis was not in contempt for distributing the photos and videos. Spriggs objected to the Magistrate’s ruling, but the trial court overruled her objection finding that “there was no clear and convincing evidence that [Davis] distributed photos of [Spriggs].” Spriggs appealed the decision.

In Estate of

Body than A hydrating prescription viagra small lot s citrusy i. Had bluelatitude.net cialis men Have purchased product viagra australia online I which so viagra dosing trying invigorating, never viagra manufacturer coupon is get didn’t what blue pill results frizziees on recommend coupon for cialis clean don’t my vitamins for ed find My stuff cialis discounts until. Forward use product viagra effects on men extra-sense cover flake.

Thomas G. David v. Claudia Spriggs, the Ohio Appellate Court upheld the trial court’s decision. To prove civil contempt for violation of a court’s order the plaintiff needs to show by “clear and convincing evidence” that the defendant did in fact violate the order. When the potential evidence is located on a computer, photos being posted on the Internet and evidence of an Evidence Eliminator program on the defendant’s computer are not enough to find contempt. Specifically as to the Evidence Eraser program, the court noted that “testimony was presented that it would not be unusual for someone in Davis’ line of work, who has sensitive information on his computer, to use this type of program on a regular basis.”

At this point the evidence Spriggs requires is probably lost in the ether, but as far as the courts are concerned, Davis is not to blame. In the future if Spriggs needs evidence from a computer she would do better to enforce evidence production deadlines in a timely matter and make sure that even if there is a viable reason for the existence of an Evidence Eraser program, it be turned off until all evidence is collected.

Michael Zoller received his B.A. in Political Science from Johns Hopkins University. He is currently a third-year law student at Seton Hall University School of Law, he will be receiving is J.D. in May ’11.

Want to read more articles like this? Sign up for our post notification newsletter, here.

Comments (2):

  1. This case is flat-out shady. There must have been more to the case that was not reported in the opinion. For example, the judge has dealt with these two parties in the past and Spriggs is a disaster and completely ludicrous in court.
    How could a judge find that the most intimate pictures of a person could be released to the world and let the offender just cover it up…after repeatedly disregarding discovery requests?
    Sanctions are typically granted when a party is caught “red-handed” and this situation seems to merit just that. Well, maybe Davis got off easy since he has since passed.

  2. I agree that the finding is a bit ridiculous. If Mr. Davis was the only person with access to the photos and was specifically ordered not to disclose them a contempt finding would seem to follow automatically. The evidence eraser is further evidence that he had something to hide.

Leave a Reply

  • Find an eLesson

  • Register for Post Notifications

    Subscribe to receive updates whenever a new eLesson is published.

    Manage Subscriptions
  • Let Us Blog Your Event!

    eLessons Learned is fast becoming the site of choice for employers, employees, judges, lawyers, and journalists who are interested in learning more about these areas without being intimidated by the complexity of the topic. In fact, organizations and event coordinators often feature eLessons Learned as their official eDiscovery blog. Fill out our simple registration form to have eLessons Learned be the official blog of your organization or event.

    Register Now
  • Recent Praise

    The blog takes a clever approach to [e-discovery]. Each post discusses an e-discovery case that involves an e-discovery mishap, generally by a company employee. It discusses the conduct that constituted the mishap and then offers its ‘e-lesson’ — a suggestion on how to learn from the mistake and avoid it happening to you.

    Robert Ambrogi

    Legal Tech Blogger and creator of LawSites




    Although I may have missed some, yours is the first article that I have seen addressing Zubulake II. It is often the lost opinion amongst the others.

    Laura A. Zubulake

    Plaintiff, Zubulake v. UBS Warburg


    Click here to see more.
zzzz