by John Seiler | October 29, 2014 9:55 am
California has come a long way from the innocent days of the “CHiPS” TV series of more than 30 years ago, starring Larry Wilcox and the heartthrob of teenage girls of that time, Eric Estrada, as state motorcycle cops.
Here’s latest, from the Contra-Costa Times:
MARTINEZ — The California Highway Patrol officer accused of stealing nude photos from a DUI suspect’s phone told investigators that he and his fellow officers have been trading such images for years, in a practice that stretches from its Los Angeles office to his own Dublin station, according to court documents obtained by this newspaper Friday.
CHP Officer Sean Harrington, 35, of Martinez, also confessed to stealing explicit photos from the cellphone of a second Contra Costa County DUI suspect in August and forwarding those images to at least two CHP colleagues. The five-year CHP veteran called it a “game” among officers, according to an Oct. 14 search warrant affidavit.
Harrington told investigators he had done the same thing to female arrestees a “half dozen times in the last several years,” according to the court records, which included leering text messages between Harrington and his Dublin CHP colleague, Officer Robert Hazelwood.
Contra Costa County prosecutors are investigating and say the conduct of the officers — none of whom has been charged so far — could compromise any criminal cases in which they are witnesses.
It also makes you wonder about the intelligence of the officers hired nowadays as CHiPS. Didn’t they know that, if they could leer into the digital lives of suspects, somebody eventually also could uncover their digital leering?
This also is another reason to cheer the recent decision by Apple to automatically encrypt all the communications on its devices — and to reject the FBI’s objections about the action supposedly compromising national security. Wired wrote:
At issue is the improved iPhone encryption built into iOS 8. For the first time, all the important data on your phone—photos, messages, contacts, reminders, call history—are encrypted by default. Nobody but you can access the iPhone’s contents, unless your passcode is compromised, something you can make nearly impossible by changing your settings to replace your four-digit PIN with an alphanumeric password.
Rather than welcome this sea change, which makes consumers more secure, top law enforcement officials, including US Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI director James Comey, are leading a charge to maintain the insecure status quo. They warn that without the ability to crack the security on seized smartphones, police will be hamstrung in critical investigations. John Escalante, chief of detectives for Chicago’s police department, predicts the iPhone will become “the phone of choice for the pedophile.”
But what if the perverts are in the government?
Source URL: https://calwatchdog.com/2014/10/29/chips-pass-around-stolen-nude-photos-of-suspects/
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