Friday, July 25, 2014

VIDEO: Facebook and Twitter Used Against Beating Victim Cameron Masnayon

Guam News - Guam News

Guam - Social media such as Facebook and Twitter have been known to expose even the most reserved people and today it was used against beating victim Cameron Masnayon. The three defendants accused of beating Masnayon to the brink of death appeared in court today. Their defense counsels argue that while the prosecutor tells Judge Arthur Barcinas that Masnayon is still recovering in California in rehab, his Twitter and Facebook accounts paint a different picture.

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It has been nearly four months since 19-year-old Cameron Masnayon was found lying on the ground in front of Vons Chicken in Harmon barely clinging to life. And he has made a miraculous recovery since. He was once in a coma unable to breathe on his own, but now report indicate he's able to walk and talk, albeit with supervision.

Assistant Attorney General David Rivera tells the court that Masnayon will need more time before he can come back to Guam. He's currently in California undergoing rehabilitative therapy. The last time Rivera checked a few days ago, Masnayon still has not had a post-traumatic assessment, which is necessary before he can be checked out of rehab.

Rivera also informed Judge Barcinas that Masnayon's mother believes her son is still traumatized and says doctors are still working out concerns over injuries to his brain. But defense counsel for the men accused of beating Masnayon with a baseball bat to the head, aren't buying it.

Rivera tells Judge Barcinas that he needs more time. He says video conference is not available at the rehab facility Masnayon is in and he was told that Masnayon would have to leave the facility in order to do so. For now Masnayon must stay put, he indicates. So why was Masnayon seen in Disneyland? That's exactly what defense counsels are asking.

Masnayon's tweets and status updates were provided by Public Defender Louie Yanza, who represents Michael Rosal. Yanza questioned how Masnayon can leave to visit Disneyland but not for a video conference. Yanza argues that Masnayon's tweets clearly demonstrate that Masnayon has the cognitive and mental ability to compose tweets and is coherent in his thoughts.

Daniel Rosal's attorney, Public Defender Jeffery Warfield acknowledged that he had not been aware of Masnayon's Twitter and Facebook accounts prior to today, but he was just as dismayed with the details. Warfield was referring to tweets from Masnayon saying he was caught with THC--the chemical compound in Marijuana--in his system and that he had been to Disneyland recently. Warfield anticipates that those tweets may eventually used against Masnayon in court during jury trial.

Judge Barcinas, however, dismissed the Facebook and Twitter feeds as hearsay. He gave River until Monday to submit a status report on Masnayon and scheduled another status hearing on Wednesday, August 22 at 2:30 pm.

The three men accused of beating up Masnayon are facing charges of attempted murder and aggravated assault.

Meanwhile, Atty. Randy Cunliffe says he plans to file a motion to dismiss the lack of a speedy trial for his client, William San Nicolas. Judge Barcinas had earlier denied San Nicolas' speedy trial rights because Masnayon was still in rehab. But Cunliffe argues that Masnayon does not need to be present to testify against San Nicolas because he says San Nicolas never touched Masnayon.