Facebook tagging may be a more serious matter than one might think, at least in the case of one woman who now faces jail time for violating a protection order.

Acting Judge Susan Capeci of the Westchester County Supreme Court said that Maria Gonzalez had clearly violated a protection order which prohibited her from contacting her sister-in-law. The breaching of the order will ultimately cause Gonzalez to serve a year in jail.

According to the judge, Gonzalez created a Facebook account where she made some status updates, tagging the sister-in-law, Maribel Calderon. Her Facebook status allegedly expressed derogatory remarks such as "stupid" while there was one status which read: "You and your family are sad...You guys have to come stronger than that!! I'm way over you guys but I guess not in ya agenda."

Calderon complained that she received notifications from Gonzalez.

The status updates eventually caused Gonzalez to be charged with criminal contempt in the second degree. This type of court allegation could land Gonzalez in prison.

"The allegations that she contacted the victim by tagging her in a Facebook posting which the victim was notified of is thus sufficient for pleading purposes to establish a violation of the order of protection," wrote Capeci.

Kim Frohlinger, a solo attorney in Hartsdale who represented Gonzalez, argued that the ban on contacting Calderon through Facebook was not explicit.

However, Capeci stressed that the order clearly expressed that Gonzalez was prohibited from contacting Calderon, using electronic or any other means.

She also cited a decision by the Court of Appeals in 2014. In the witness tampering case known as People versus Horton, the court ruled that Facebook messages are email in essence.

When a person is tagged on Facebook, he immediately receives a notification that tells him he is tagged. According to Facebook, "Tags can point to your friends or anyone else on Facebook. Adding a tag creates a link that people can follow to learn more. People you tag can receive a notification so they can see your post. The post may also go on the person's profile and appear in their friends' news feeds."

Violating a protection order is not merely confined to getting close to the person physically, calling them, or sending them text messages. Even online activities such as communicating through Facebook can also be means for breaching an order.

Attorney Frohlinger told the New York Post that she is not filing for an appeal to the ruling.

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