Roland Hill 2-26-13 How cell phones help solve crimes How cell phones help solve crimes? This is the subject that I have picked for my research paper. The reason that I picked this subject is because I am fascinated with CSI stuff. I got interested in being a CSI person when I started to watch Dexter. The show was about a person who was a blood splatter analysts for the police department. I was hooked not only on the show but also the job. So when I went back to school I switched my major from business to criminology.
I have taken one class on criminology already and loved it. When a crime is committed the police and the forensic officers gather all the evidence from the crime scene. Everyone knows about DNA evidence but there is other evidence that a lot of people either don’t know or don’t think about. That other kind of evidence is digital evidence. Digital forensic officers job is to collect all the data they can from cell phones, mp3 players, iPads, computers and any other kind of electronic that they can get information on about the crime that was committed.
I will talk about the good and the bad traits about how cell phones solve crime and if it truly is a good way to solve crimes or if the police should change how they solve crimes. Cell phones are important in the crime fighting world. Cops use the data on them and other digital devices like iPods, iPads and MP3 players to gather evidence to help solve crimes. They use a device called a flasher box that takes the data off of the device and puts it onto the computer. Digital evidence is responsible for up to 90% of crimes that are solved.
An example of how the police use the information off of cell to help solve crimes is when a guy named Reznick died on August 13 and within days, using his cell phone data, found two suspects responsible for beating and killing him. Another example was when detectives in Wilkes-Barre obtained a warrant to look at the cell phone records of a guy who hit and killed a girl at her apartment. When they got the records they were able to triangulate the cell phones position using the cell towers and the gps in the phone.
As it was slightly mentioned a little while ago police can use cell towers to triangulate your location and that of your phone. This is done by looking at where your phone has been according to the connection it establishes to the cell tower. You don’t have to make a call or text someone for this to happen, your phone does it regularly on its own. All police have to do is get a warrant to get a hold of your phone records and they will know everywhere you have been. Cell phone records aren’t the only thing that helps solve crimes. Having a cell phone has sped up the time it takes for one to report a crime.
Back in the day you used to have to find a phone booth or a store that had a phone you could use. Another thing about phones is the fact that almost all cell phones have a working camera so you can take a picture of the crime itself or the after effects of a crime. Police have also used cell phones to help track down abduction victims. As long as the phone is on the police can track the location of the phone to find out where the kidnappers have taken the abduction victim or victims. Another way police have used cell phones to solve crimes is by connecting the dots.
This is done by looking at the phone records and seeing who the person has called or text and where the calls or texts have been made. An example of this would be when the police caught a suspect who had killed a hooker. The police used the suspects phone records to see who they called and where they made the calls. They used that information and compared it to the suspects alibi to see if he was telling the truth or lying. When they got all the information back they knew that the suspect was lying and that he actually was in the area that the hooker was killed and around the same time she was killed as well.
The cell phone providers have also helped out the police by making it as easy as possible for the police to get the information that they need as fast as possible. When the police get cell phone records they consist of a lot of information that could help them in solving whatever crime was committed. Cell phone records consist of incoming and outgoing calls, text messages, chat messages and mms (multimedia messaging service) of an individual made during the hour of offense.
The police use all this information to see who they have been in contact with and who has been contacting them as well. The question now is whether or not collecting digital evidence is a good thing or a bad thing. If people don’t let the police use the digital evidence to solve crimes there would be a lot of unsolved crimes and a lot of criminals would be out on the streets still. Another thing would be those that are innocent and looking at the digital evidence from cell phones would prove that they are indeed innocent, they ould be in jail for a long time because what needed to be looked at wouldn’t be able to be. On the other hand there are people who believe in their right to privacy and consider their phone records something to not be looked at because then their messages would be read and it would be like someone reading someone else’s diary. Another fact about how cell phones don’t help solve crimes is that drug dealers have been using disposable cell phones to hide who they have been in touch with and to hide the fact that they are drug dealers.
The reason that they do this is because disposable cell phones are a lot harder to tapp and by the time the police have figured it out and can tapp the phone the drug dealer has already bought a new phone and then the whole circle of tapping the phone starts over again. The last thing that is bad about cell phones and how they help solve crimes is that people drive and use cell phones which instead of solving crimes also causes crimes. People who use cell phones while driving are distracted and cause accidents. Some people have even killed people using their cell phones while driving.
After everything I have read and wrote about I believe that using cell phone data and other digital evidence is a good thing. Cell phones help solve 90% of crimes now and as long as people are responsible and use them correctly and smartly by not driving and using the cell phone it will continue to be a good thing. Plus our world will be a safer place with the bad people put away and good people out on the streets. If that can only be accomplished by using the cell phone data and other digital evidence then continue away.