This article discusses the evolving case against Jared Loughner (Arizona gunman responsible for supermarket shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and others) and the likely use of his internet search history in the case against him.
We (or at least I) already knew the following:
Information posted on sites like Facebook and MySpace has already been used by police, probation officers, and university officials to punish criminals who were dumb enough to make information of their wrong-doing public.The article adds:
Increasingly though, non-public web search information like the kind being used against Loughner is being forcibly collected from defendants’ computers or even subpoenaed directly from websites that the suspects used.Interesting ...
While many people support prosecuting pedophiles, murderers, and terrorists using any information attainable, these sorts of cases set judicial precedents that can’t be easily erased.True. And while I want the right to privately search whatever I want on Google (sometimes a girl has questions that she can only ask anonymously...) I also want police to be able to do this:
Another example of this same sort of privacy invasion happened when a 4-year court case came to a close after the conviction of Rosario DiGorolamo. After years of pleading his innocence to the courts he finally admitted his guilt after records for “lethal karate blows to the back of the head” were revealed. These internet searches were made just before his wife’s murder, which was carried out in a similar fashion.Call me old-fashioned, but if you can PROVE that an alleged murderer did an internet search on HOW to commit the murder, you should just go ahead and use that evidence.
So the takeaway, start using public library computers that can not be traced back to you...Or just don't murder people.