Lawton attorney ponders ripple effects of Michigan email hacking - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Lawton attorney ponders ripple effects of Michigan email hacking case

LAWTON, Okla. - The case of a Michigan man who is in legal trouble for going through his wife's e-mails could have far-reaching implications for couples everywhere.

Leon Walker could face prison time if he is convicted of felony computer abuse.  He and his wife were going through a divorce, and he says he checked her email because he suspected she was having an affair.

The charge of felony computer abuse is normally reserved for hackers who commit credit card crimes.  But one Lawton attorney says the outcome of this case could set a precedent for future privacy cases.

"I think that's ridiculous.  They're married.  She was in the wrong.  She cheated on him.  They took a vow," said one local resident.

"I don't think he has a right to be in her e-mail," said another.

Lawton Attorney Scott Ray says it all depends on the state and the prosecutors.  He says Oklahoma's law is clear.

"If you willfully and without authorization access someone else's computer, even if it's for a good reason, it's still a crime," said Ray.

Ray says the outcome of the Michigan case could have a ripple effect that goes beyond married couples.

"What if a child had an email and a parent was wanting to check because they thought he was doing drugs or something?" asked Ray.

One of Ray's biggest concerns is the fact that the crime the Michigan man is charged with is a felony, and a felony conviction has long-lasting implications, after the sentence is served.  

"Which affect a number of things in a persons life, employment, to other issues, Constitutional rights you might have that might be lost with a felony conviction over something that may be based upon good intentions, but a technical violation of the law."

Ray says other legal questions that both prosecutors and defense attorneys will consider include whether the couple created the email address together, whether it was his computer he accessed the email on, and whether she had a reasonable expectation of privacy.

  • Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • UK police think boy, 3, was attacked with acid at store

    UK police think boy, 3, was attacked with acid at store

    Sunday, July 22 2018 11:04 AM EDT2018-07-22 15:04:24 GMT
    Sunday, July 22 2018 2:25 PM EDT2018-07-22 18:25:19 GMT
    A general view of the Home Bargains store where a man is accused of an acid attack on a young boy, in Worcester, England, Sunday. British police say a 3-year-old boy suffered severe burns on his face and arm. (Matthew Cooper/PA via AP)A general view of the Home Bargains store where a man is accused of an acid attack on a young boy, in Worcester, England, Sunday. British police say a 3-year-old boy suffered severe burns on his face and arm. (Matthew Cooper/PA via AP)

    British police say a 3-year-old boy suffered severe burns on his face and arm during a suspected acid attack that investigators think was deliberate.

    British police say a 3-year-old boy suffered severe burns on his face and arm during a suspected acid attack that investigators think was deliberate.

  • The Latest: Molinari breaks US stranglehold on majors

    The Latest: Molinari breaks US stranglehold on majors

    Sunday, July 22 2018 11:09 AM EDT2018-07-22 15:09:29 GMT
    Sunday, July 22 2018 2:24 PM EDT2018-07-22 18:24:50 GMT

    Francesco Molinari's win at the British Open has broken the American stranglehold on golf's major championships, with a U.S. golfer having won the previous five.

    Francesco Molinari's win at the British Open has broken the American stranglehold on golf's major championships, with a U.S. golfer having won the previous five.

  • Gunman in LA supermarket standoff arrested for murder

    Gunman in LA supermarket standoff arrested for murder

    Sunday, July 22 2018 8:49 AM EDT2018-07-22 12:49:27 GMT
    Sunday, July 22 2018 2:10 PM EDT2018-07-22 18:10:09 GMT

    Police say they're trying to determine what prompted a man to shoot his grandmother and then run into a busy Los Angeles supermarket and hold dozens of people hostage for hours.

    Police say they're trying to determine what prompted a man to shoot his grandmother and then run into a busy Los Angeles supermarket and hold dozens of people hostage for hours.

Powered by Frankly