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Woman holding iPhone6S with facebook messenger on the screen. iPhone 6S Rose Gold was created and developed by the Apple inc. Woman holding iPhone6S with Facebook messenger on the screen. iPhone 6S Rose Gold was created and developed by Apple Inc.

Yet another court has passed up the opportunity to decide whether social media platforms interfere with defendants’ right to a fair trial when they refuse to hand over users’ communications.

In an opinion Thursday, the California Supreme Court decided that it will not rule on the constitutional questions in a case brought by criminal defendant Lance Touchstone, who is seeking the Facebook messages of a shooting victim to help exonerate him of an attempted-murder charge. The court said it is reluctant to adjudicate the matters when the underlying subpoena might not be enforceable.

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Alaina Lancaster

Alaina Lancaster, based in San Francisco, covers disruptive trends and technologies shaping the future of law. She authors the weekly legal futurist newsletter What's Next. Contact her at [email protected]. On Twitter: @a_lancaster3

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