When an individual is arrested for a crime, some of the information pertaining to their arrest becomes available to the public. For instance, you can look up if and when a person was arrested, the reason for their arrest, and where they are being detained. However, you won’t find personal information such as social security numbers and such relating to the suspect as this information is required to be kept confidential. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case with Mark Donaldson.
According to Donaldson, who was convicted in Lee County for DUI back in 2009, after his case became visible to the public, more of his personal information surfaced than what is allowed. Apparently, a motion that was filed regarding his case contained his social security number and medical records, all of which was available for the public to see, and for several years at that. And when WINK News contacted the Lee County Clerk of Court regarding the visible information, it was removed within minutes. Despite the fact that the information was no longer available to the public doesn’t mean Donaldson’s personal information wasn’t compromised.
Aside from Donaldson’s social security number being shared with the public, it was also posted online alongside his fingerprint card. And after investigating further, he even discovered other criminal court filings that contained social security numbers along with the individual’s fingerprint card all posted online. Donaldson said that when he alerted the Clerk’s Office regarding his fingerprint card, they fixed it, but neglected to take down the documents that contained his social security card. In fact, the Clerk’s Office said that they weren’t aware of Donaldson’s issue until they were contacted by the news outlet.
Now, Donaldson has filed an appeal for his DUI conviction after multiple pieces of his personal information that shouldn’t be made visible to the public was.
Lee County Clerk of Court Has Leaked Personal Information in the Past
According to WINK News, this wasn’t the first case of confidential information being leaked. In February 2016, a software glitch led to “sexual assault victim information and social security numbers to be posted.” And back in August, WINK News alerted the clerk regarding “a confidential filing containing graphic information in a child abuse case.” Linda Doggett, who works for the Lee County Clerk of Court told the news source that “a staff member missed a confidential information filing before posting that document.” Doggett said that her staff has since been retrained.
Although there isn’t much that can be done to prevent the public from being able to look up an arrest or conviction, never should an individual be subjected to having their private information revealed to the public. As you know, a social security number alone is enough for a scammer to steal a person’s identity and that is something no one wants to have to deal with.
If you have been arrested or convicted of a crime in Cape Coral, FL but have yet to discuss your case with a criminal defense attorney, now would be a good time to contact the Law Offices of Michael M. Raheb.
So, if you were recently arrested or convicted in Cape Coral, FL and you want to be sure your case is handled properly and that your personal information isn’t made visible to the public, contact criminal defense lawyer Michael M. Raheb by calling 239-945-4447.
You can also visit the Law Offices of Michael M. Raheb, P.A. at:
1222 47thStreet, Suite 411
Cape Coral, FL 33904