Camera Phone Catches Criminals Along With Pictures
Cell phones that take pictures are increasingly helping law enforcement agencies identify, capture, and prosecute criminals. Not only can officers gain insights into crimes through pictures taken by victims on their camera phones, but using a new service offered by Nextel, officers themselves can employ camera phones to access the national criminal database or receive mug shots of suspects.
Officers cite several cases, including attempted abductions, robberies, and other such situations, where victims or witnesses have used their camera phones to take pictures of the perpetrators or of the crime.
Although they acknowledge that the rising use of camera phones to catch victims brings with it a slew of new legal issues, including possible violation of wiretap laws, law enforcement officials say cell phones that take pictures are having a real impact on their ability to fight crime.
Abstracted by the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center(NLECTC) from the Associated Press (03/13/04); Niesse, Mark.