Cell Phone Tracking: Police Are Using False Information To Get Confessions

Cell phone tracking information is not accurate, despite what police have been telling suspects accused of crimes. For years police have been telling suspects they can place them at the location of the crime based on a phone call or cell phone record in order to get confessions.  A new article in the New Yorker outlines how cell phone tracking, when done through cell towers, is really just an inaccurate guess of where a suspect is when a crime is committed.

In one recently overturned cell phone tracking case, the police used this false information to convince a suspect and her attorney that she should plead to a manslaughter charge. Despite being miles away from the scene of the crime at the time it happened, the police used information they claimed put her at the scene. The woman pled guilty to avoid what she thought was a near-certain conviction and harsher sentence.

False confessions happen when people accused of crimes are not armed with the right information. Remember, if you are interrogated by the police they do not have to tell you the truth. In fact, police will often lie to suspects in order to gain information. In Frazier v. Cupp, the US Supreme Court approved “deceptive interrogation tactics” and gave police the green light to lie about the evidence they have to suspects under interrogation.

I should note that I am not talking about cell phone location gained through a “stingray” device that the police are now using in Florida. I’ve written before about their use, and how the police have been successful in keeping records of their use covered up, which means we really have no idea of how accurate they are, or what information they get from a cell phone.

The bottom line is that you should not take what the police tell you at face value. At Metcalf Falls, Criminal Defense Attorneys, P.A. we are experienced in dealing with the evidence the police claim they have, and in filtering through what’s real and what isn’t. If you are facing a criminal charge contact us and let us work for you.