Monday, March 14, 2011

Your Last "Tweet" : What will it reveal about You?

Left: Shanterrica Madden is accused with stabbing to death (Right) Tina Stewart
This past weekend, Memorial services were held for slain Middle Tennesee State University, basketball star, Tina Stewart.  Also this weekend, her accused killer, Shanterrica Madden was released on a $100,000 bond.  Tons of rumours swarmed social sites about what happened the night of the incident.  An incident of this magnitude, in this town, on this campus, has surely shocked the nation and left many unanswered questions.  As Madden made her first court appearance some details have been confirmed.

What would cause a freshman student to stab another student athlete to the point of death?  Was there a heated argument?  Have they had problems before?  Was it an accident?  Was it self defense?

Even if your page is private, people with
public pages may Retweet what
you say!

Well, details have revealed that Madden's attorney is claiming self defense in the murder of Stewart.  This entire claim may rely heavily on the use of the social site, Twitter.  During the court hearing, Stewart's attorney, Joe Brandon Jr., requested that information found on twitter be "Preserved".  This means that the defense attorney, Brandon Jr., wants to make sure that posts made on twitter by the parties, or any other evidence for that matter, which could easily be subject to "corruption, destruction, or contamination" be obtained and preserved in its original condition to be used as evidence during the trial.

Apparently, friends have confirmed Stewart's twitter page which contained a tweet stating "I just called the police on my roommate.  I feel like a snitch, but I cant stand that B@#%!".  Responses to that tweet, such as "Don't Hurt her", have also been noted.  If you review Madden's twitter page, most of her last tweets were centered around school work.

This incident is very unfortunate.  Definitely, more details will be revealed during the trial.  I hate the families and friends on both ends have to re- live the entire ordeal.  We don't know what happened on that night, but how much of an influence do you think Stewart's last tweets should have in the trial?  Unfortunately, the entire trial may center around it.  Check out a past post where a a young man was acquitted of the murder of a rapper, based on past incidents between the parties and a self defense claim HERE

Just be careful what you tweet.  You never know what your last tweet will be.  R.I.P. Tina Stewart

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With high profile cases like these, rumours swirl out of control before the story even hits the news.  I recall all the rumours that surrounded the murder trial of Rapper, Dollar, (view here) and how so many people were upset with the outcome of the case (not guilty).  They did not understand how someone could be found innocent for such a crime, when in reality most of the details they heard about the murder were untrue (or proven otherwise in court).  With that said, lets clear up some details that have been revealed in the Madden case, regarding the night of the incident. 
On Thursday March 24, 2010, a preliminary hearing was held for accused murderer, Shanterrica Madden.  A Judge decided to bound the case over to a grand jury, who will then decide on May 16, if there is enough evidence to charge Madden with first degree murder.  Evidence submitted during the hearing clarified that:
1. Stewart was stabbed ONE time (not multiple stab wounds)
2. Wounds to the back of Stewart's head, left shoulder, and left elbow
suggest there may have been multiple ATTEMPTS to stab more than once
3. Fatal stab wound was below collarbone in the center of the chest
4. Madden's statement suggest that she held knife to her chest as Stewart came towards her
5. Defense suggest fatal stab wound is inconsistent with Madden's story


Update #2 April 11, 2011 - Parents of Tina Stewart sue accused murderer Shanterrica Madden for $20million.
The suit is a civil case, for "wrongful death".  You may recall in the O.J. Simpson case, he was not convicted of murder in his criminal case, but he was found liable in a civil case filed by the parents of the victims.   The same scenario is playing out in this case.  Stewart's family is aware they may never see $20 million from Madden, however they are filing the civil suit in hopes that Madden will not profit by selling her story to any media outlets.
The burden of proof is lower in a civil case vs. a criminal case.  In a criminal case the defendant should be found guilty "beyond a reasonable doubt", meaning without a doubt in your mind, the defendant is guilty.  In a civil case the plaintiff has the burden of proving "a preponderance of the evidence", meaning "more likely than not", the defendant is guilty based on the evidence presented.

Update #3 May 14, 2012 - Shanterrica Madden was convicted of 2nd degree murder
Although, the Prosecution tried to convict on 1st degree murder.  Shanterrica was found guilty of 2nd degree murder.  The difference between 1st degree and 2nd degree murder is intent.  In order to be convicted for 1st degree murder, the prosecution had to prove that Shanterrica premeditated (planned, prepared, setup) the murder of Tina Stewart.  The prosecution was unsuccessful in determined that the murder was premeditated.  However, they were successful in proving that the intent at the time the incident occurred, was to murder.  She faces 15 to 25 years in prison, plus 3 to 6 years for throwing the murder weapon in the dumpster.  Sentencing will be held on July 16th.

Update #4 July 17, 2012 Shanterrica Madden was sentenced to 29 years in prison for the 2nd degree murder of MTSU basketball player, Tina Stewart.  This sentence includes the maximum 25 year sentence for 2nd degree murder, and an additional four years for tampering with evidence.  Madden will be eligible for parole when she turns 46 years old.  She is currently 20 years old.  Although Madden is a first time offender, the judge did not believe Madden was sincerely sorry for her crime.  She apologized during her trial and via a letter during her sentencing.  Two young lives ... GONE.


  1. This was a deep sad situation. And I hate to see this happen to anybody. Yes, these days ppl can pull your twitter and fb pages for just about anything. I have saw someone get fired because they posted pics on fb of them out at bars and "living it up" and they were out from theit job on workmans comp... (tisk tisk) if u are goin to party dont post it on fb where im sure u are friends with someof your co workers... Then here in memphis there was a robbery at a well known bar in midtown and one of the theives posted a comment on fb and the owner saw it and let thr police know and they were caught.. Yes I do agree that u have to watch what u say on sites like this BUT.. In some cases it may save your life... But in the case of Ms Stewart... My heart goes out to her family... And in this case I would say from what I heard (which may or may not be true) if she waa stabbed multiple times..y n the hell would you stab someone multiple times like over 20? I think that was bull shit if that was true.... But this is neither here nor there juat my opinion.. Good job on thr blog...

  2. It is sad that we've come to this point where we don't solve conflict without physical confrontation. Everyone must stop and think about howyour actions affect more than just you. All the violence, and acts of angry and destruction, that we see everyday on the television, in the movies, in video games, and songs that we listen to, are eating away at souls. We must teach our children how to handle conflict without being violent, and not only teach them but be a living example.

  3. This is truly a messed up situation. I remember hearing a little bit about this case, and I always wondered some of the details. We may not ever know what really went on that day Ms. Stewart was killed. But I believe it is something behind that last tweet. Sounds like there was some animosity there between the two that had been brewing for some time. Especially if you take it to the point of calling the police. Seeming Ms. Stewart was a promising basketball star at her college it's hard to believe she would engage or initiate such violent actions which would cause the suspect to defend herself to the point of stabbing Ms. Stewart to death.. But who knows I'm No detective, and Only God and the two ladies involved knows the real story.. God Bless both of their families.. -D. Carter

  4. This is real sad. Violence & weapons are never the answer because someone may end up getting hurt or in this case killed. Internet/social networking is slowly taking over the world...that's why I don't put much into it because you never know who is watching & how it may be interpeted. I'm sure Tina did not know that would be her last tweet but obviously the things we do, say, & publically write down can be used as solid evidence in the courtroom. It was stated that the police was called but if u have time to tweet in a situation like this, why not pick up the phone to call a close friend or relative or even walk away from the situation until all parties involved have cooled down...I wasn't there so maybe these things could have taken just seems like social networking is the very first thing people rely/run to in any situation, I often wonder how much better or worse people/things would be without it. This is a very sad situation and even worse when it hits close to home. May you R.I.P. Tina!

  5. This is one sad incident but I felt that she had no other choice but tobut to tell. But its sad both families suffering a great loss. May we continue to pray for them.

  6. So what was Stewart about to snitch on the other girl about. To stabbed someone 20 times means there was alot of anger brewing inside toward the victim. No matter what the girl said on twitter, that other girl knows right from wrong and couldve control her actions better. She also couldve taken herself away from the situation. But females nowadays want to be like guys and dont want to be punk out or the bigger person and walkaway. Even though Stewart went to twitter and said she was going to call the police at least she did or was about to. @Larry4realJr