Menu Contact
Robert D. DiDio & AssociatesRobert D. DiDio
& Associates
Call To Schedule An Appointment
917-300-0984
En Español
SERVING NEW YORK WITH INTEGRITY & COMMITMENT

When our devices provide incriminating evidence: Part II

In our last post, we began a discussion about the privacy problems posed by our electronic devices. Not only do our devices collect and store information about our daily movements and activities, they sometimes share that information without our knowledge or consent. The incident in our last post was a particularly striking example.

In other cases, police may obtain search warrants for electronic records. A recent case involved a man who was charged with arson and insurance fraud after police examined data from his implanted heart monitor.

Last September, an Ohio man called police to say that his house was burning down. He told dispatchers that he noticed the fire, went to his bedroom, packed several bags and threw them out the window.

Given that the man has an artificial heart (and therefore has limited stamina), police were suspicious. A cardiologist cited in court documents said that the man's version of events was "highly improbable" given his health condition.

Ultimately, police obtained a search warrant to examine the electronic records of the man's pacemaker around the time of the fire. The examined data included the man's heart rate, heart rhythms and the demand on the pacemaker. The data suggested he was lying.

Investigators seemingly confirmed that the man was lying when they found that the fire had "multiple points of origin" from outside the house, and that the man allegedly had gasoline on his clothes.

Although the latter pieces of evidence are conventional, the electronic records from the medical device are possibly unprecedented. Given that the man needs this device to live, it is arguably part of him. Can this be reconciled with the Fifth Amendment's protections against self-incrimination?

As our electronic devices become ever more sophisticated and ubiquitous, the issue of personal data as evidence will become even more pressing. If you have been charged with a crime, please seek the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney right away.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

What Our Clients Say

  1. Pedro from Nassau County

    “I was arrested and charged with being the getaway driver during a knife point robbery. The police stopped my car a block away from the robbery with my co-defendant in the car with me. The victim identified my co-defendant to the police within 5 minutes of the robbery...

    - GREAT JOB MR. DiDIO!”
  2. We understand the pain, stress, inconvenience and financial turmoil that can result when you are suffering from a personal injury.

  3. Intellectual property law is complex — if you have an idea you should consult with an experienced attorney before making any decisions.

  4. Póngase en contacto con nosotros para programar una consulta inicial de media hora gratuita con un abogado con experiencia. Hablamos español.

  5. Póngase en contacto con nosotros para programar una consulta inicial de media hora gratuita con un abogado con experiencia. Hablamos español.

  6. Póngase en contacto con nosotros para programar una consulta inicial de media hora gratuita con un abogado con experiencia. Hablamos español.

  7. Póngase en contacto con nosotros para programar una consulta inicial de media hora gratuita con un abogado con experiencia. Hablamos español.

Email Us For A Response

Tell Us About Your Case

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Robert D. DiDio
& Associates

8002 Kew Gardens Road
Suite 307
Kew Gardens, NY 11415

Phone: 917-300-0984
Fax: 718-793-0165
Kew Gardens Law Office Map