Not too long ago we had a case here at International Investigators that pointed out how important it is to work with professionals.
A woman came to us about her son. He and his wife were in the midst of a bitter divorce and child custody proceeding. Her son had temporary custody and the wife would come to the marital home for visitation. He would leave or go out into the garage or yard while she was there with the children.
After one of the visitation sessions, the wife reported to police that she had learned her husband had sexually molested one of the children.
In the course of the investigation, the son and his mother figured the police would want his computer to look for pornography and they suspected that his wife would have downloaded something on the machine.
So the mother took the computer to a friend who did IT work. He did indeed find some pornographic files and opened them. At first, the ages of the subjects in the pictures was not discernible, bordering on child pornography. They were later deemed pornography, but not child pornography.
When the police did come take the computer, the mother and son told them they suspected the wife had put the files on the computer because they hadn’t been there before. But by opening the files, the friend had corrupted them – changing the dates.
The mother brought the computer to us asking for a computer forensic analysis and computer data forensics recovery. However, because the files had been corrupted, we were not able to help them prove the wife had loaded the files in his absence.
By this point, his reputation had already been damaged in the community.
The point here is that if there is a reason to consider the need for computer forensics services, do yourself a favor, protect the integrity of the information on the computer and get a computer forensics expert to help you. In order to be admissible in court, a computer forensics investigation or computer forensics analysis must be provided by a computer forensics specialist under a very specific protocol.
Don’t make the same mistake and have to live with the inability to clear your name and prove innocence.
-T. Wilcox, CEO, International Investigators