NYC Cops Nab Alleged Rapist Via iPhone App

By Tanya Roth, Esq. on February 15, 2013 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Catching a rapist? There's an app for that.

While many people have privacy concerns about iPhones and their location-based applications, an iPhone app actually led police to an alleged rapist and as a result, he was apprehended.

NYPD officers caught the suspect by tracking the iPhone he allegedly stole from his victim, reports New York's WNBC-TV.

The victim, a 15-year-old girl, was allegedly sexually assaulted as she walked home from a subway station in the Bronx. In an ironic turn of events, her iPhone getting stolen was a blessing.

The GPS-enabled "Find My iPhone" app led police straight to the alleged assailant. He is now in custody as they investigate.

In New York, iPhone thefts are nothing new, as one in seven crimes involves an Apple product getting stolen. Many of these thefts occur when users are distracted, such as when they're on public transportation.

That's why the "Find My iPhone" app is so popular with iPhone owners. The free app allows an owner to pinpoint the location of a lost or stolen iPhone. An owner can access the app from a laptop or home computer, and "Find My iPhone" will show the phone's current location on a map. It also works for iPads.

But while the "Find My iPhone" app has successfully been used to track down suspected criminals, suspects can still challenge their arrests. For example, perhaps the person in possession of the stolen iPhone had just found it on the street, and had nothing to do with the phone's theft.

In that case, the suspected thief -- or in the case of the 15-year-old girl's attack, the suspected thief and rapist -- may want a good criminal defense attorney on his side. At last report, the man caught with the stolen iPhone was being questioned by police, but had not been charged with a crime.

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