Police try to unlock cellphone with dead man's finger

Police try to unlock cellphone with dead man's finger

Police try to unlock cellphone with dead man's finger

Florida police have raised eyebrows by showing up at a funeral home and trying to use a dead man's finger to access his phone, the Tampa Bay Times reports. Is it really OK to use a dead man's finger to access his smartphone because of an ongoing investigation?

This comes after her fiance, Linus Phillip, was killed by a police officer in March. Reportedly, they unsuccessfully tried to unlock the man's device by using his fingerprint. They head over to the funeral home and grab his cold dead hand and mash away with it.

"I just felt so disrespected and violated", Armstrong told reporters on how she felt after seeing the incident. Charles Rose, a professor at the Stetson University College of Law, has revealed that deceased persons can not assert their Fourth Amendment protections because they technically do not own any property once they have passed away.

Officers also only have five attempts to get the correct corpse digit onto the touch sensor before, again, an iPhone will lock itself. Police said they didn't believe a warrant was needed because there is no expectation of privacy after death.

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Lt. Randall Chaney told the Times that police wanted the phone data for their death investigation as well as a separate drug probe involving Phillip. "There's a ghoulish component to it that's troubling to most people".

An unlocked iPhone was found on his person - but in the hours after his death as police sought access to his phone, the iPhone went to sleep, and when it reopened, it required a passcode.

Due to fingerprint scanners becoming ubiquitous on smartphones these days, law enforcement is having a harder time trying to gain access to a suspect's phone as they can not legally force them to give it up.

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