Search "Sondra Price" on Facebook and you'll find a profile for the woman shown above. From the information that's publicly displayed, you'll learn a few things about her: She went to Watertown High School, she drives a BMW, her nickname is "Sosa," and judging by one picture, she might have young children.
All of this is true—the children in the photo are her son and niece, it turns out—but she didn't create the Facebook page—a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent named Timothy Sinnigen did. Sondra Arniquett was arrested in 2010 for a minor role in a cocaine-dealing ring (she went by Sondra Prince at the time). Ultimately, she was sentenced to probation, BuzzFeed reports, and without her knowledge, Sinnigen used photos and information taken from her seized cell phone to set up the profile in hopes of luring in other offenders. Now, Arniquett is suing Sinnigen, and government attorneys are claiming that the identity theft was permissible. From BuzzFeed:
The DEA's actions might never have come to light if Arquiett, now 28, hadn't sued Sinnigen, accusing him in federal district court in Syracuse, New York, of violating her privacy and placing her in danger.
In a court filing, a U.S. attorney acknowledges that, unbeknownst to Arquiett, Sinnigen created the fake Facebook account, posed as her, posted photos, sent a friend request to a fugitive, accepted other friend requests, and used the account "for a legitimate law enforcement purpose."
The U.S. Attorney defending Sinnigen claims that the agent's actions were OK: while Arquiett did not give "express permission" for Sinnigen to use the photos, it is argued, she "implicitly consented by granting access to the information stored in her cell phone and by consenting to the use of that information to aid in an ongoing criminal investigations." To which Anita L. Allen, a University of Pennsylvania law professor interviewed by BuzzFeed, replied: "I may allow someone to come into my home and search, but that doesn't mean they can take the photos from my coffee table and post them online."
Astonishingly, four years later, the fake profile is still up. One photo, of Arniquett "wearing either a two-piece bathing suit or a bra and underwear," was at some point pulled down—Sinnigen's government lawyer argues that the photo was not sexually suggestive—but the picture of her young son and niece remains.
Arniquett's five-year probation sentence for the drug arrest was terminated in March.
[Image via Facebook]