Why Did The Cops Arrest a Former Gun Store Owner for Refusing to Cough Up His Facebook Password?

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 8.00.14 PMIt’s come to this…

If you’re the owner of a popular gun store, and have a popular Facebook personality used to promote the store, you can be arrested for refusing to turn over the password to your Facebook page.

Jeremey Alcede used to own Tactical Firearms. He lost the store after he declared bankruptcy. The store was then purchased by new owners.

When he still owned the store, Alcede posted politically charged Facebook updates. These were posted on his own personal Facebook profile. The updates would link to the store, but the posts were entirely his own.

Well, when the store was purchased by new owners, they wanted access to Alcede’s Facebook page. When Alcede appeared in court and the judge ordered him to turn the password over, he refused.

He was then arrested for contempt of court. That’s right, he was arrested for refusing to turn over the password to his personal social media account.

As Alcede told KTRK-TV, “When they said they wanted the Facebook, I explained to the attorney who was representing the company that there is no company Facebook page and there’s just my personal page. And I asked her to convey that to the judge, and obviously it wasn’t conveyed.”

Alcede believes his success using Facebook to promote his business is why the new owners are going after his profile.

The store’s new owner, John Boyert, contends that at the time of the posts he was still working for the shop, and so anything done to build the business should be his property. As he said, “At the point in time, he was an employee of the company and he was building that for the company regardless of who is owner or not.”

It’s an odd story, for sure. But it’s one that brings up a very important discussion about privacy rights.

Surprisingly, the government has deemed the privacy of U.S. citizens as inconsequential.

The recent house vote on Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2015 allowed the executive branch sweeping powers to view all your private communications.

Password or not.

You need to see how to protect yourself.

CLICK HERE To See How You Can Fight Government Surveillance

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  • Up Huff

    Wonder why the link at the end of the story is blocked?

    • snowyriver

      Yes i get a page not available.

      • Bruce Walters

        same here

        • Worship Dancer

          yep me too – problem loading page.

    • jim scofield

      The government gremlins are at it again I get server not found

      • Lenny Reali

        same here

  • truthseeker

    When you leave a place of employment you no longer have the right of ownership and that is understood. This is considered an address for potential customers to contact you. The same goes for your face book account. All claims to the property is surrendered over as a transference of ownership, just like a title to a car. You must give up the Title, deed, registration and insurance out of your name., because you do not represent this ownership and it could cause a conflict . That is just my impression .

    • rivahmitch

      If it is a personal page and was not specifically listed as a part of the contract which transferred ownership of the business, I’d say that’s a stretch.

      • S. Wicks Jr

        But if it was used for business operations and existing customers have used that page; when he sold the business; the page should have been turned over to the NEW owner…..

        • kktex12

          Nope. It is his PERSONAL webpage to do with as he wishes. If the webpage was not mentioned in the contract of sale the new owner is sol.

        • Ron Jackson

          No one knows who he might have communicated with on Facebook. It could be a girlfriend, or the new owner’s wife for all we know. You don’t need to know what is on a page that he had if yo are the new owner. It is stupid of them to even pursue such a thing and it is stupid if a judge ordered him to do it. If the man appeals the judge’s order, he would win.

        • ELVIS

          Did you not read the same story I did? He did not sell the business, he lost it, which means the new owner did not buy the business from him

    • Louise Goins

      The man did not sell his business. He went bankrupt. New owners bought the business, probably through the courts. His personal facebook was not part of the deal…maybe the new owners should have asked to be his friend on facebook.

    • Simon Collinge

      Only company owned property

      • delwebs

        how many of you people voted for the black guy–ENJOY

        • sandman

          Evil, manipulative, narcissistic, greedy, sexually confused and stupid had nothing to so with color! Can anyone imagine the type of President Dr. Ben Carson would make? Do not use the excuse he has no experience either, just look at who we have in there now, a community organizer?? !

    • M. MOLNAR

      He should have “closed down” his personal F.B. account and reopened it under another name when the new owners demanded his FB account info. The new owners have no right to his “personal” F.B. account unless that was written specifically in the final paperwork with the transfer of property. If it was never written in the legal transfer documents, the new owners are out of luck. Legal is legal. That judge has his head up his posterior ruling that the first owner relinquish his password. That just shows how ignorant the legal system has become. Pitiful…

    • Ron Jackson

      No. You are wrong. He sold ‘them’ the store. His Facebook account cannot be bought or sold. He could give it to them free if he wanted, but is is not property of the store, it is his personal affair. There is such a thing as the right to privacy. His Facebook page might very well include things that have nothing to do with the store; private things they have no business knowing.

    • kicklotsofbutt

      Not so if it isn’t written in the contract or bill of sale specifically as property to be transferred. Sounds to me that the purchaser has a problem that he discovered after the fact and is now demanding something he has no right to. The judge is a pin head to try to force the issue. In the meantime I would simply inform my customer base of a new site and then shut the old one down.

    • Worship Dancer

      except this was his PERSONAL facebook account. that’s like saying when you leave your place of employment you have to give them access to your PERSONAL email accounts.

  • rutbuster1

    I was thinking the same thing. Page not available.

  • rivahmitch

    I guess that personal computer records give off insufficient emanations to allow black robed tyrants to divine the emanations of penumbras associated with privacy.

    • CTH

      Was the judge uniformed or merely a dumbass. I vote for the latter.

  • Jason Golff

    It doesn’t really matter the small details of whether to give up the password or not. We are now in a police state under Obama and Holder. You no longer have individual rights to privacy. Something needs to be done. Maybe along the lines of like the NYPD and not enforce small violations that raise money for the city and only answer calls with a minimum of 6 police cars at time. Put the pressure on the politicians and make their job impossible until they are willing to stand behind the police that protect that city. Otherwise let it burn while they watch.

  • I think everyone should be fully prepared to refuse giving anyone their password(s) and also be prepared to live in a jail for as long as the court(s) think it’s necessary. Toward that end we should each prepare extremely long and extremely convoluted passwords for everything. If ever asked for a password one should immediately be forgetful and have no memory of the requested password.

    • Terry Butts

      Come to think of it is it not part of the agreement when signing up at most if not all social media sites and many other sites that you will never give your password to someone else?

  • Joan Freda

    Nothing to wonder. We all know why. Yet we sit back and do nothing. We are slowly losing all our freedoms and soon it will be too late to do anything.

  • Obama does not plan for there to be an election in 2016 because he believes he has won.

    • Simon Collinge

      Won what?

      • S. Wicks Jr

        In theory obamy CANNOT run for president again. Two terms max or a total of 10 years if he had taken over from another president (which it did NOT)…..

        • Joan Freda

          You’re correct. The 22nd clearly states the term for the presidency shall not exceed 2 terms, unless he/she is filling a term for a president who has become unable to complete his full term. However, obamanation is a very accomplished sneaky bastard. He may declare Martial Law, that is probably why he is inciting the riots, or he will get his little devil pen and sign an executive order amending the 22nd. and just run again. Actually, it really doesn’t matter any more. There isn’t a person on the planet that can undo the damage obamanation has done. Do you really think the brotherhood will allow anyone to put this country back the way it was?? America is gone, the way of life we have worked for, fought for and enjoyed is over. God help us!

        • Oh boys and girls…
          when has our constitution and laws ever stopped our un-believed
          President Obama?

        • Worship Dancer

          you are correct – IN THEORY. however, if he declares martial law – grounds racial unrest nationwide (?) – he will then suspend the Constitution, disband Congress, cancel all elections – effectively becoming king for life.

          • Terry Butts

            That is essentially how many other nations turned into dictatorships.

            One could look at how Hitler went from an elected official to the ruler of Germany in just a few years compared to what is going on in America today a lot of similarity.

      • James D

        There was a congressman or senator, I can’t remember now, who wanted to abolish the two term rule so that Obama could run again. I don’t believe it got any traction, but who knows what goes on behind closed doors. We never actually get any truth out of anyone in government or the media. Another way of looking at it is that the growing civil unrest, exacerbated by the administration, may get bad enough in the next two years to enable Obama to declare martial law and suspend elections while retaining his power. Just throwing a couple of theories out that may make O think “he won”.

        • Gary Stuckey

          The only way he can remain in office after 2016 is to abolish the 28th amendment through declaring martial law wich suspends the constitution. At wich time “We The People” will rise up in a ARMED REVOLUTION!

          • Worship Dancer

            AND thankfully the ONLY way to repeal ANY Amendment is for a 2/3 majority of STATE legislatures to ratify the repeal.

      • The New World Order’s war to end free America.

        • Joan Freda

          Do you have any idea what the words ‘New World Order’ means and who spoke them first?? Google those words. You will be horrified to learn these very words spoken during WW2 by none other than Hitler himself. That’s where this country is headed.

      • Worship Dancer

        King for life.

    • Our un-beloved President Obama has effectively
      ‘Executively Ordered’ America’s Constitution, Bill of Rights, Laws and way of
      life out of existence and has convinced himself that he is un-stoppable. I remember sitting within arms reach of the
      drug lord who had murdered over a thousand people when I testified against
      him. He also thought he was
      un-stoppable. He is dead.

  • traveler 1962

    If you are ordered by the judge, then you are to turn it over. If not, then you get arrested. It is the Facebook owners own fault.

    • CommonSense4America

      Just wondering,,,do you have any principles for which you are willing to stand up for?

    • kicklotsofbutt

      #1 you can refuse and immediately appeal to the next higher court. #2 in my situation they would have to provide for ALL my medical care with the exact meds I take which is cost prohibitive and if they attempted to use generic the law suit would be greater than the sum of their budget.

    • Worship Dancer

      if the judge ordered you to give up your password to your PRIVATE email, bank, etc accounts would you?

  • rosieb47

    I can hardly believe he could be arrested for not revealing his Password. That is shocking. The judge ought to be ousted and fined. What is our wonderful world coming to???

  • Anthony

    same here, they would not like my password

  • The wicked shall burn in hell.

  • GrandmaAmerica

    John Boyert, hope your business fails…

  • Apolloone

    I have a question every time I come on here there is this ad to the left of my screen that blocks a good amount of every article and I cant get rid of it. From top to bottom it’s the letter F underneath F is a Bird, underneath the Bird is G+, underneath it looks like a P, and finally underneath it is what looks a Crown. I know Face-Book Twitter and Google, but it doesn’t matter what they are anyway, they ruin coming on here for me. Anyone have any suggestions. The only way I know is cancel my subscription or just erase the site from my mail box I like the stories so I don’t want to do that.

    • CommonSense4America

      I’ve got the same problem. I’ve tried making my screen larger/smaller and nothing helps. I have also unsubscribed to other sites where their ads were intrusive. Maybe this one is next. Let me know if you get a resolution to this problem.

      • Apolloone

        Yes CS I did thanks to some people on here, I think this will help but some computers are different in their ways of deleting these ads. Click underneath the crown and arrows should pop up. Don’t go inside the crown I did this and a box popped up with a list of questions and the only way to get off that box is to get off the whole site. So try underneath the crown first and I’m not sure which arrow bit experiment with I believe it will work let me know.

        • CommonSense4America

          I will try that. Thanks. BTW,,,I hate computers.

    • Ron Jackson

      Yes, it blocks some of the content. The reason it is there is lie the F stands for facebook and allows yo to share your post here of facebook if youwant to. Samme with g+,the bird=twitter, p=pandora.

    • PB92

      Put the courser on the 2 triangles underneath the crown and click on them.
      It will minimize to the left with only the 2 triangles still visible.

      • danstewart

        Put your curser on the crown to make the triangles appear, then click on them.

        • Apolloone

          Thanks Dan I tried that as you and PB suggested on my computer I pressed the crown and a box popped up to fill in the blanks and that couldn’t be gotten rid of unless I got off the page completely, but when I put my curser underneath the crown then twin arrows popped up and by clicking on them those unwanted ads disappeared{):-)

          • danstewart

            Correct, don’t click the crown, just move your curser over it & when the arrows appear move your curser to them & click. A lot of sites are kind of sneaky in trying to get you to follow the ads.

      • Apolloone

        Thanks PB it worked; I put my cursor underneath the crown and twin arrows popped up which were never visible before and I clicked them and the whole column disappeared. Thanks so much{):-)

  • Ron Jackson

    The link at the end seems to be unavailable. Why do you thin this is the case?

    • danstewart

      Page was shut down by the feds.

      • Lenny Reali

        you got it right.

      • Ron Jackson

        Thank you.

  • Jacky

    Okay, have you had enough, yet?
    If not, what will it take?

  • apzzyk

    Legal Fact: I would take it that it was a business bankruptcy rather than a personal one where his car, house, etc would be auctioned by the bankruptcy court so that creditors could be satisfied as much as possible, if he used his personal account to post advertising for the business then he crosses the line and the password goes with the business. With accounts on Facebook being free, he could have opened another one as Me, DBA Myself, and kept the contest separated. On top of that, as soon as something is posted on Facebook, there is no reasonable expectation of privacy. Sounds like the gun business was not so good.

  • Bette Gilbertson Zimmerman

    Why didn’t they go to FB and look it up. You can look at anyone’s page. This story sounds fishy…

    • ELVIS

      Who can look at anyone’s page, I had my page set up private, so inless you were friends with me you could only see what I set as public. I deleted my fb, they will be coming out with a new permission thing at the beginning of the year, which I want to have no part in, if everyone started deleting their accounts fb would rethink turning over all our info, but people wont so it will continue

  • Buckindaburg

    The article does not say if there was any type of non-disclosure agreements…or if his personal page was part of the company. The new owner seems to think that it is, and the judge may merely be trying to ascertain if it is or isn’t?

    The article does point out that some of the postings were politically charged. Okay…pro liberal or pro conservative? If the guy owns a store and is using his own account to do business…why? How hard is it to open an account that is exclusive to store business.
    I am all for 4th amendment rights and abhor government intrusion, but it seems this guy was either incompetent or lazy. One way or another, his lawyer should be able to have a closed door session with the judge and keep the information that is private, from being given to the new owners. And…any particular pages that are pertinent to the business, should be a part of the sales agreement.

  • Tedski

    But your Honor……….I don’t recall using any password? Take the 5th.

  • sandman

    Would not the name of the account mean anything? I mean if the name used to see the FB page is his name, it would be his and his alone, but if the FB page has the Company name? it would go to the new owner! IN the eyes of the court anyway.

    • ELVIS

      Yea I was thinking the same thing, and I think it said it was his own personal fb and not a company fb page, your personal name is not part of the business, or at least it shouldn’t be

  • Gary Fyke

    People, Educate yourselves beyond what someone else rants about. Reading this account of the gun store owner going to jail to resist the government from trampling his personal right to privacy is one of these situation where emotional and misinformed people perpetuate an incorrect account of what actually took place. The gun store owner erred, flat out made a mistake in putting his store business promotion on his personal FB account. just like “apzzyk” said. Operating a business is governed by the Universal Commercial Code (UCC) and tax regulations in most situations. When the man did what he did, he made his personal FB account a part of the business assets , thereby part of the business that new owners purchased. The original owner acted in ignorance of the laws (regulations and codes governing business operations) and voided his right to claim personal right to privacy. The judge simply applied the laws to the situation and ruled accordingly. NO evil government trampling on an individual’s constitutional right to privacy. The judge did what he did because the the judge has the authority and power to order compliance to the ruling. When the respondent in a civil court action defies the judge’s order, the person can be held in contempt of court and sent to jail until the person complies with the ruling.The original store owner decided to take a position that was based upon ignorance and an unfounded interpretation of a Constitutional guarantee to privacy. From many of the comments I have read in this forum, it seems that many contributors are not acquainted with the very laws that govern how businesses operate or understand how to dissect legal matters and see what is actually being done. Many simply want to create and wave signs and banners and jump on the bandwagon of evil and vile government trampling on and depriving the little guy’s Constitutional right to privacy. I would bet less than two percent even think about what the true facts are, they simply react, somewhat like looters during riots. It’s time we quit falling for every instance of where someone claims a violation of their civil rights, and start asking the questions that need to be asked to determine the real facts. Education in the rules of law and society should be a primary effort of every person living in this country, or any other country for that matter, and become the basis of intelligent decision making. Don’t take everything just on what you see on the surface. Listen to the claim and then try to determine if it has any basis in fact. Then consider them and try to make the best decision you can.

    • ELVIS

      I agree to the extent of people need to and must think for themselves and stop falling for just anything

      • Gary Fyke

        Thanks Elvis. I do believe that many of our problems are created when we fail to check things out before we decide what position we will take on an issue. Gut responses are very often found to be off point or only partially address the whole issue. A questioning and inquisitive approach can be very useful in avoiding making a fool of oneself. It’s disappointing to see a comment of a person who passionately fires off a comment based on only one or two points of an isssue that actually has many more points to be considered. When the other points emerge through further investigation the initial comment often must be recanted, but some people can’t do that. I support many of the things government does on our behalf and I definitely support our LE officers to do their job. All of this comes from the faith and trust I place in those who we elect to guide the ship of state. However, I do not dodge my responsibility to pay attention to what elected officials are doing and do my part to express my opinions by following their actions and vote my view on election day. I do not promote violent redress of what I believe is the wrong direction government is heading. Killing policemen judges and elected officials is not what this country was founded upon. We fought a war for the ability to forge our own type of government that made it possible for a person to choose how he wants to make his life based upon his thoughts and abilities, not what the government tells him. We are currently facing that very same question again. The current administration has shown it has little regard for the Constitution. We must defeat them by holding elected officials accountable Peaceful demonstrations have a legitimate place in the mix of things. Screaming and yelling vile things and taking unlawful physically violent action against those we feel are the cause of the problem brings nothing but great sadness and harm to everyone. I am not a “peacenik” by any means.But this crap we are getting from the people in Ferguson and NYC is nothing more than orchestrated rebellion by those wanting to radically convert the US into a non-representative government. Pure democracy does not work any more than pure communism. That’s why the founders of this country created a representative republic government. Is it perfect? NO. but it is surely the most free country in the history of the world. It also created the most financially successful country in the history of the world. Are there things that need to be tweeked? Absolutely, but not by executive order of a tyrant in the making. If we are going to “Raise The Flag” of America or the US, then lets do it the way it was designed to be done, not through violence.

    • Pam Powell

      Hi Gary. Of all the posts on this subject you seem the most knowledgeable of these type of laws so I would like to ask a couple of questions, hopefully you don’t mind and you reply:). First question is if he was posting on his account to friends only and not public does that make a difference? Second question, why would he need to turn over his password that would give the new owners access to his personal data and his friends personal data which would be visible to the new owners using his password, instead of the judge ordering him to turn over content relevant to the business?
      Thank you in advance if you choose to reply.

      • Gary Fyke

        Hi Pam; Thanks for the compliment. I am not an attorney, but have been involved in a lot of legal situations and have studied political science when I began college, eons ago.My comments are based upon my education, and experience in the work place and the world. I’ve had to deal with attorneys in many instances in concert with them on issues and in opposition to them in other instances. It all adds to the pool of knowledge that I go to to to help me think issues through.I worked in LE( criminal and civil law issues) for 30 years and over 5 years in civil law where I had to sift through information of all sorts to arrive at a point where I could honestly and knowledgeably arrive at a conclusion that could be supported with facts and evidence before making a decision. With regard to the mixture of personal and business matter contained in a personal FB account, I am as much in the dark as anyone else as to just where the line is drawn. Fortunately, we have courts available to help us sort those matters out and promulgate rulings that set standards for us to use in dealing with each other and our businesses.I do not know the essence of the arguments presented by the plaintiff and respondent in this particular case, so I’m at a disadvantage in weighing the basis of the judge’s ruling. If I did, I might be able to form an opinion of whether I agree with his ruling or not. But, having the experience I have gathered and the studies I’ve made I accept that the judge exercised his discretion in view of the facts presented in the hearing or trial.There could be an appeal by the original store owner’s attorney, or the compliance to the ruling by the store by the respondent. (in civil cases we identify the adversaries with names different than in criminal cases) but we will have to wait an see.

        I am not skilled in internet FB legalities with regard to privacy and passwords to accounts like we generally know them.
        I have seen cases where courts have ruled that intellectual properties generated and arising out of the conduct of a business belong to the business and not to the person generating the information, product designs and similar ideas and plans. I suspect that in this case, this concept may have been at the root of the judges decision. I do not know in what state the case originated so cannot discuss any laws that may apply here.The issue of privacy is a fuzzy area when you open a FB or similar account and start spewing personal information into cyberspace and then apply a password to prevent others from gaining access to the account holders names and personal data. The way I understand it, a password is used to establish administrative control of the the page/site so someone other than a person authorized to change the page basics as established by the FB account holder. That would prevent someone from changing the appearance of the page etc.Content posted to the page/site is open to the public unless the page owner has limited who sees the posts. It would seem to me,(cautioned opinion here) that if the FB account holder used the page to advertise his business and create open product sales, for example, that would become a part of the business and therefore should be released to the new owners. Most of what the FB Account owner would have filed with FB would most likely have been revealed to the new owners during the purchase process. All the previous owner would need to do would is close the page and create a new new FB account an password. The new owners already know him and where he lives and can easily find out about him through a wide variety of sources. I do not understand the argument when a solution is so readily had. The new owners, I’m guessing, are not pleased with what he puts on the FB page which is now associated with their business, which they feel could damage their reputation. If they have the password, they could change the information that is presented on the page: photos, addresses, links etc We also do not know whether the FB page details were included in the purchase agreement. I hope this in some way helps you with your own interpretation of the original owners and new owners positions. In the end, only an appeal and reversal of the trial judges ruling or the compliance to the judge’s order looks to be a resolution to the issue.The previous owner would have to try to get his case heard in a federal court, if this hasn’t already been done. We don’t know if the case was in Federal Court or State Court. These are just my thoughts and do not carry any more weight than the next person’s. I just avoid making snap decisions on these kind of issues, because that is the method I have relied upon during my adult life and for the most part have kept me out of serious troubles. Shooting from the hip is notoriously inaccurate.Get the facts,weigh them for truth and then make a decision… ,

        • Pam Powell

          Hi Gary, thank you for taking the time to reply to me, I really do appreciate it. The information and views you provided did shed light on the legal side of this issue and I now have a better understanding of why the judge ruled as he did. Like about the posts being maybe being considered intellectual property of the business, therefore part of the business. Thank you again for taking time to reply and sharing information. Take care.

          • Gary Fyke

            Pam;
            I hope I didn’t over load you with concepts, but I am glad you had the courtesy to ask questions. That is one of the most helpful things we can do when faced with complex issues. In the legal parlance, that is part of the concept of “due diligence.” If you do not examine issues thoroughly you haven’t done due diligence.
            You are welcome and I hope I have been of help.
            Gary

  • PIERRE77L

    For that kind of draconian act by cops and the judge. 1776 will Reign again. No wonder why cops will be killed including judges and politicians. F.U. Arrogant Bastards. You’ll pay a heavy price for that mistake.

  • 83footsailor

    That is one of many reason I don’t have a ** face ** book page and never will have any of that garbage either.///////

  • snowyriver

    Tried it again today.. webpage is not available. Who would block this webpage? Could it be Government being as the heading is how to stop Government surveillance? ?

  • proudpatriot

    What is in the purchase contract? Does the contract specify the facebook rights? If not, TFB! Sue the courts system.

  • Laurence Almand

    Big Brother in action. And just why is the Executive Branch granted all these unconstitutional powers? Another step towards dictatorship!

  • Laurence Almand

    I clicked on the link and it said “Page cannot be displayed.” What’s going on?

  • Terry Butts

    Judges need to be educated about technology this right along the same lines as that judge that destroyed the business that simply provided a connection service where its clients could connect each others computers together when some of them shared music files the judge kept ordering the business to remove the files from their server and never understood the difference between a router connecting two other machines they did not own together and which they had no control over the content of and a server that stores files for people to download.

    The end result was the business was destroyed and handed over to the music industry who sued them. They then installed a server and using the same name created a server for selling music files and the service for connecting two privately owned computers together where they could then do anything from share photos etc. to run cooperative games with each other was gone.

    All because the judge could never understand that his order to “remove the files from their server” was physically impossible because the files never existed on their router and they had no server providing the files.

    Now we have a judge that can not differentiate between a personal profile and the personal comments and a business profile.

  • Monty Montgomery

    why didn’t the judge just go to the NSA and ask them, they keep tabs on everyone anyway.

  • myfordtruck

    Nothing surprises me about the government anymore

  • Junior1950

    Yeah. Funny thing about the link telling you how to avoid Government Surveillance doesn’t work! The Government has no business demanding our passwords to ANY PERSONAL ACCOUNT!