Those who face criminal charges may face time in jail, fines and other serious penalties levied by the court. However, those faces charges often find that they quickly become outcasts in their community. It can be digital blacklisting and shaming done to celebrities and public figures accused of misbehavior. Still, the average person in business or within a community can also have their reputation unfairly damaged.
Sometimes all it takes is to be charged before the online shaming begins by others in their community. The target’s actions may not make national news, but online or in-person attacks can still have a devastating effect on the target and their family. It can also impact one’s professional credibility and ability to earn a living.
Fighting back often necessary
The target cannot prevent people from talking or posting online, but they can be proactive in defending themselves from these attacks.
- Educate: Rather than fighting fire with fire, it may make more sense to take a logical and measured approach that addresses accusations head-on using available facts.
- Shame the shamers: Depending on others’ actions, it can be useful to defend oneself or enlist others to point out tasteless, hurtful or inappropriate behavior.
- Focus on what’s important: Targets can focus on things they can control, such as maintaining relations with friends and family and working towards a positive outcome in court with an attorney’s help.
- Use the law: There are several laws that protect people from online bullying. Depending upon the circumstances, it may also make sense to file a defamation of character lawsuit if the attacker’s claims are untrue.
Work with an experienced attorney
Those charged are innocent until proven guilty. A criminal defense attorney can be a tremendous asset in fighting charges or helping to ensure that penalties fit the crime. An attorney with courtroom experience can examine the prosecution’s case to protect the defendant’s rights to the full extent of the law.