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Law professor weighs in on arrest of mom who posted video of school fight

Posted at 6:38 PM, Feb 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-21 20:37:39-05

The mother of an Acadiana High student who posted video of a fight on Facebook is out of jail tonight and has hired an attorney.

KATC is choosing not to share that video of two teenagers fighting at the high school.

Maegan Adkins-Barras is accused of sharing the video to show parents what was happening at the school. Her child reportedly filmed the fight, and Barras shared it. The two students who actually fought are also facing charges.

Will the charges stick? The law is more than a decade old, but not commonly known.

Scott police tell us it’s illegal in Louisiana to post a crime if you’re a principal or accessory to that crime. Police say she’s an accessory to publishing the crime.

An LSU law professor we spoke with says he does not see this ever being prosecuted. Ken Levy says to be an accessory, you have to be involved while the crime is underway; posting it after the fact does not qualify.

Levy goes on to say the law is possibly unconstitutional and infringes on free speech. The professor believes lack of public knowledge about the law could lead to this charge being dismissed.

“There are plenty of examples of people posting other people in the act of committing a crime,” Levy said. “It’s all over the Internet. That strengthens her mistake of law defense. How would she know that that was illegal when so many other people are doing it? I hope she has a good lawyer. I really don’t think this is fair, and I don’t think she did anything wrong.”

Levy also believes Barras could argue police have violated her rights to free speech and that she could be entitled to damages from police.