- Associated Press - Friday, October 10, 2014

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - The Connecticut Supreme Court on Friday ruled that an assault suspect wasn’t harmed when a judge barred evidence from Facebook at trial.

But the high court declined to decide whether lawyers had done enough to establish that those involved in the online chat were who they purported to be.

The issue arose when lawyers for Robert Eleck tried to show that a witness against him had lied when she testified she had not talked to him after the alleged assault in December 2007.

They tried to present the transcript of a Facebook chat between Eleck and the witness, Simone Judway. But the trial judge barred the evidence after Judway denied being part of that chat and said her account had been hacked.

Prosecutors had argued it was impossible to determine who was using the screen name during the chat.

But Eleck’s lawyers appealed, arguing they had done enough to establish that Judway was in fact the person involved in the chat, noting that it occurred before the date she had told the court her account had been compromised.

The high court declined to set a threshold Friday for admitting such evidence, ruling instead that in this case, the evidence wasn’t important enough to affect the verdict, and barring it did not harm Eleck.

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