Crime Google Earth Solved
Google Earth has solved a number of crimes, these are the most interesting
Wherever we look, technology has taken over aspects of our life. However, it has also provided an army of armchair detectives with the means to help solve cases, none more so than google earth. Here are five cases that police solved with its help.
Dutch Bike Thieves
In September 2008, a fourteen-year-old boy was robbed whilst he rode home. The thieves took his bike, cash and cell phone. He reported it to the police immediately; however, the case went unsolved for six months with little evidence. Finally, when the young man was scrolling through google earth, he found a photo of himself riding his bike; behind him were the two robbers. The police were able to identify the two as they had existing records; they were arrested and charged.
Florida Boat Dump
When a police officer discovered a dumped boat illegally, he was determined to bring the fly-tipper to justice. Spending hours searching google earth, he finally found the boat and its original dock. Research then led him to the owner of the vessel. Greg Foster, who could have paid as little as $18 to have the boat disposed of, had decided to save himself a few dollars. Instead, he faced a $5000 fine and up to five years in jail.
Swiss Marijuana Farm
In 2008, police were trying to identify a drug ring. So they went onto google earth to examine the property of two farmers they suspected of being involved. What they spotted confirmed their suspicions for one farmer had planted in the middle of his corn field was two acres of marijuana. The cannabis was seized; sixteen people were arrested for the drug field visible on satellite.
Italian Tax Dodger
In 2009, an Italian businessman was being investigated for tax evasion. Authorities suspected that the villa he sold in Sardina in 2002 was worth a considerable amount more than he had declared. Searching google earth, they discovered the size of the property and its actual value. Further searching proved that this was only the tip of a vast tax evasion case.
British Caravan Thief
In 2009 a couple returned to discover that their white caravan had been stolen from their drive. One year later, their young son was searching places he knew on google earth he decided to look at his house. There was the caravan parked on the drive along with a strange car; the caravan thief had decided to act just as a google earth car was passing. Police identified the man and the license plate of the vehicle. The thief was arrested.
These are just five crimes that have been solved by google earth; I have previously written about a missing person case that was solved as well. In all these cases, as faces are blurred on google earth, the police had to obtain from the company clean images to investigate. However, this does prove with a bit of time and patience; you might be able to solve a crime whilst surfing the internet.