From Sergeant Mary C. Kusmiss S-6 BPD Public Information Officer
Tuesday May 22, 2012 - 12:27:00 PM
We have received wide interest in this incident. This is the summary of the incident (with some clarifications added) that was provided to two media outlets that had independently inquired about it.
Chief Meehan is out of town today.
Let us know if you have further questions.
Sgt. MC Kusmiss
City of Berkeley Police Department
Public Information Officer
Office of the Chief of Police
Mon-Thurs 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
City of Berkeley Police Department (BPD) PIO Email Summary - January 11, 2012 Incident Involving BPD Chief Michael K. Meehan Son's Stolen iPhone 052212
“On January 11, 2012, Chief Michael K. Meehan son’s iPhone was stolen at Berkeley High School. The stolen iPhone was equipped with tracking software, which was providing its general location in real time.”
“Chief Meehan showed his own phone with the in progress tracking of his son’s stolen phone to the BPD Property Crimes Detective Sergeant. Given the active signal of the stolen phone, the Detective Sergeant decided to take his team to try to locate it. As the signal was moving into the City of Oakland, the Detective Sergeant called the Drug Task Force (DTF) to ask for some additional assistance and members of that team offered to help. Chief Meehan did not order anyone to investigate.”
“The team followed the signal from Berkeley into Oakland until the signal stopped updating its position. Members of BPD attempted to contact residents at several homes in the vicinity of the last known signal of the stolen phone. The area was 55th Street and San Pablo Avenue in North Oakland. No community members in that neighborhood were able to provide any useful information and the team ended the investigation. Four detectives (One Sergeant and 3 detectives) extended their shifts for approximately two hours each and were given overtime.”
“It is common for BPD officers to actively investigate an in-progress tracking signal from a stolen electronic device. (e.g. Laptops, Smartphones and Tablets) These investigations can involve a Supervisor and multiple officers depending on the circumstances of the case and the location(s) of the signal(s).” (examples forthcoming)
“No report was written, an oversight that came to our attention when researching your questions. The team did not call the City of Oakland Police Department (OPD), although this is a courtesy and not required.”
“BPD has long recommended that community members use tracking software on their devices or load such software in order to support an investigation and the possible recovery of stolen property. This incident demonstrates the importance of safeguarding your property, a theme continually emphasized by the BPD.”