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67 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 82760 5-May-2011 09:05
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hi guys, just wanted to know what you guys think about this..

For obvious reasons, I will not name the organizations / persons involved. But there is one organization in Auckland who give their staff Android devices so that they are able to track / locate / status of where they are at, at any time. And all this can be done remotely. Its like a stealthier version of the 'Wheres my Droid' app. this is not to track employees but to ensure safety of thier staff who visit 'risky' clients.

Anyway, now one of the phones got stolen (along with a laptop), and the IT team were able to get details on the address of where the phone was at (actual street address), (where it had been during the day), and a google maps location (even showed a room in a house), all done remotely. The fool didnt turn the phone off. This information was presented to the police. but the police refused to act on it, saying there was not enough evidence and the reliability of the information provided was questionable. So they just did nothing.

i found this really strange as i thought this was really good evidence to convict a thief. Your thoughts?

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341 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 465597 5-May-2011 09:16
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I've had that before with the police when I had LogMeIn on stolen laptops and watched the thieves logging in to and using Facebook. I think the cops just don't really care to look into small thefts.

We (myself and my client whose laptops were stolen) ended up just talking to different cops until we found one that was actually excited by us handing over screenshots of the person's Facebook, IP addresses they were connecting from, photos from the webcam that we remotely activated, etc. A day after we handed all that to him, he had search warrants and had arrested two people and recovered our equipment.

So I'd suggest just trying different cops until you find one who wants to know. Often the juniors are much more keen to notch up a success.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 465600 5-May-2011 09:18
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How do you get to 'choose' a cop? Dont you just get assigned one?

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 465603 5-May-2011 09:25
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You need to be very insistent. Explain the facts to them over and over to them until they get it.

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  Reply # 465608 5-May-2011 09:38
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Give them the choice, either they sort it out or John Campbell or Mark Sainsbury will. Also let the Minister know what you intend to do.


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  Reply # 465613 5-May-2011 09:42
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bikinibottom100: How do you get to 'choose' a cop? Dont you just get assigned one?


When they shoot you down, state that you want to know how to lodge a formal complaint, as you dont feel they are doing all they can to help.  Out of interest, how do you know it was stolen versus just lost?  I assume you have tried calling the phone? 

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 465618 5-May-2011 09:53
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The info you have should be sufficient for a search warrant. Make sure that you have all of the relevant details printed / presented.
A lot of 'minor' stuff is just entered through the Crime reporting line and just gets recorded. You want to ensure that the person you are dealing with knows you have decent evidence of its whereabouts. Depending on the circumstances of the theft, there may be more to it than meets the eye.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 465620 5-May-2011 09:56
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bikinibottom100: How do you get to 'choose' a cop? Dont you just get assigned one?


Go to different police stations / community constables offices.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 465622 5-May-2011 09:58
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SpookyAwol: The info you have should be sufficient for a search warrant. Make sure that you have all of the relevant details printed / presented.
A lot of 'minor' stuff is just entered through the Crime reporting line and just gets recorded. You want to ensure that the person you are dealing with knows you have decent evidence of its whereabouts. Depending on the circumstances of the theft, there may be more to it than meets the eye.


I believe there was enough information surround this to get the IT team / police involved to  ensure i wa stolen and not lost. there was a laptop stolen along with it too.

Maybe it just depends on the cop you get, some who would go the extra mile or some who wouldnt care about a small crime like this. Agree, it may be worth investigating. Given the fact that there was sufficient evidence for the cops to investigate, but yet didnt take it on, I do hope the cops had more important crimes to deal to at that period of time. Otheriwse, its just a poor reflection of our police force in NZ.

421 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 465659 5-May-2011 11:05
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Disclaimer: IANAL or police officer.

Can you explain if you received a police file number?  That is; was the complaint taken at all but the impression given nothing else would happen or was the complaint flatly refused to be taken?

If you have a record number that "file" should not be closed until all lines of enquiry have been exhausted.  You providing a possible address for the items to be at is a line of enquiry that needs to be followed.

If you did not receive a record number I would advise you go back into the police station and ask for it.  This will do two things:

1) tell you if they took the complaint at all
2) enable you to reference it should you need to make a complaint

If they are unable to provide the number I think you should start the process again.  Lay the complaint, provide the information and make sure you do not leave the station without the record number.  If you feel the person taking the complaint is not providing the service you believe they should, ask to speak to a supervisor (sergeant or above).  If you still do not receive the service expected you can complain to any of the station commander, area commander and I imagine ultimately lay a complaint with the PCA (check on the police website).  If you have to go down this route it would be extremely handy to have the police offers "QID" (basically their ID number...the one you see on their shoulders).  If you ask for this they MUST give it to you.

If you feel uncomfortable "demanding" a file number, simply state your insurance company wants the police record number as many often do.

I think you'll find that by asking for the record number you'll find things start happening to try and retrieve your possessions.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 465661 5-May-2011 11:15
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How about taking this issue to "TARGET" - TV Programme. Their initiatives get quite a bit of things rolling, and also makes external factors - which may not be really involved in this incident step in to make things square.


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  Reply # 465692 5-May-2011 12:35
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Did you speak to an actual police officer or a non-sworn staff member assigned to the public counter? It's actually quite rare for police officers to be on public counter duties as this is mostly handled by non-sworn staff now.

Having spent 10 years in the police what you have is more than enough to launch an investigation. It would be up to a JP however to determine if the evidence you have was sufficient to approve a search warrant - Police don't authorise search warrants, they apply for them and they have to have sufficient evidence to convince a JP that a warrant to legally look through someone's house is justified.

It's possible that the person you spoke to doesn't understand how all this works, which I suspect might be the case based on their comment of "the reliability of the evidence is questionable", whereas those of us who actually know about these things know that it certainly isn't questionable, especially when managed by the IT team.

I would go back to the police station and if it's still not acted on, ask to speak to a senior officer (Sergeant or above) and explain the situation.

Cops like locking up crooks, that's why we join the job in the first place, and evidence of this nature means it's a pretty straight forward investigation too.




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 465730 5-May-2011 13:47
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Yes, the police spoken to was an actual police officer on duty. The information was taken by him at the time, but definitely not acted on.

Anyway, just want to say a big thanks to al you guys with the suggestions provided. Will definitely be passing on this information / suggestions to the group handling this. Hopefully we get some action on this.

Yes, it was just a laptop and a phone this time, but in the future it may be a much bigger crime. So understanding what our options are in cases like these is definitely helpful. I wonder if the police were told that the criminal had committed an assault and then fled with the laptop and phone, would the 'reliability of the evidence be questionable then'....hmmmm

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 465760 5-May-2011 14:16
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So your saying I should be able to walk into any cop shop in the country, hand over a print out from "Super Secret Tracking App" saying my stuff is here and expect them to go raid the place?

The cop you spoke to was right, the data is questionable and I hope they wouldn't act upon that information




Most problems are the result of previous solutions...

All comment's I make are my own personal opinion and do not in any way, shape or form reflect the views of current or former employers unless specifically stated 

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  Reply # 465803 5-May-2011 15:34
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A colleague had this exact problem when his laptop was stolen. When he saw it on Trade Me he knew it was his.

After much badgering the cops finally went to Trade Me and go the details to visit the evil little sod selling it. Turns out they recovered a bunch of stolen property from that house.

Good luck.

BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 465810 5-May-2011 15:52
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I have a GPS tracking device in my vehicle. It proved helpful more than once - my wife was even lost in a rural road, called me and we were able to guide her back into town.

I would like to imagine that if my car is stolen I could get to a police station with my laptop, login into the service and show a map on screen with the exact location where my car is *right now* - and see the police going there to confirm there's my car parked in someone else's backyard.

You are saying that police wouldn't act on this information? I understand the need of a warrant to get into someone's property to search for a small item. But what if it's actually something large, such as a car, and visible from the street?





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