Working with attorneys to help them build cases for their clients is an everyday experience for International Investigators. We deal in the truth and there are two reasons attorneys look to us:
- They are trying to gather facts that prove their client’s innocence or create doubt as to guilt
- They are trying to gather information to understand the client’s situation better and be ready to defend with facts
One case that illustrates why attorneys use investigators so often included a cell phone investigation. The attorney’s client, Ralph*, was accused of robbing a convenience store. This wasn’t a case of cell phone hack detection or cell phone spying, it was the facts that the cell phone device could supply that was needed.
Most people are aware that cell phone tracking is possible on most every device with not just the GPS or “find your friend” apps, but through cell tower triangulation. In some cases, the device becomes a cellphone witness that can prove exactly where the cell phone – and, hopefully, the person was on a given day in a specific time frame. That might sound simple but there are two issues that come into play.
- Cell tower triangulation is not a simple matter. The actual cell tower location is only one piece of the puzzle. Different service providers have different processes for jumping signals from tower to tower and experts are even challenged with the actual processes.
- Cellular location evidence is also compiled through call records and time stamping. The service providers must be given precise subpoena language for cell records, messages, etc. that meet their particular requirements. Again, each provider is different – and, the big thing, they only maintain records for a short period of time.
In this case, the investigator was able to trace not only the exact location of the phone, but document through calls and time stamps that the accused was with the phone at the time of the robbery – and he was on the opposite side of town at the time the crime was being committed.
The attorney got what he needed – the facts, and a professional who compiled the forensic cellular evidence so that it was admissible in court and a cell phone and forensic expert to testify.
Attorney’s know that the facts they seek and they evidence that is collected must be handled by experienced professionals in order for it to be used. That’s why they encourage clients to use firms like International Investigators. And we are always ready to help.
-T. Wilcox, CEO, International Investigators