You Can Run, but You Can't Hide
Posted by Pamela S. on Tuesday, June 5th, 2012
The seeing eyes of the Internet and surveillance cameras are making it more difficult for criminals to commit crimes and to become fugitives from the law. The world wide web may be a place for criminals to commit crime, but it has proved to be their downfall. The FBI, the CIA, INTERPOL and many local law enforcement agencies know this and use it to their advantage. Private investigation companies also use the Internet to obtain information and locate subjects. Today’s news is one of the best examples of how it is becoming more difficult for criminals to hide from the eyes of the world.
On Friday I wrote about a Canadian fugitive, Luka Rocco Magnotta. Magnotta murdered and dismembered another male, Lin Jun. He mailed body parts to two Canadian political party offices. He posted a video of the killing online. Magnotta is a narcissist with a large online presence. He has posted numerous videos, blog posts and photographs of himself on the Internet. He is suspected of posting YouTube videos where he killed kittens.
I wrote a post about IQ yesterday. On one of Magnotta’s posts he claimed to have an IQ of 165. That would put him at genius level. Well the genius just got caught. Magnotta had also written a post providing instructions on how to disappear. The day after the killing he fled to France. He was tracked through his cell phone and surveillance cameras.
Magnotta's narcissim and the work of the media, the public, INTERPOL, Canadian, French and German police got the better of him. Police tracked him to France where he was observed on CCTV cameras at the airport in Paris. While on the run he posted a YouTube video of himself looking smug and saying “Hi to all my fans.”
This delusional killer's need for attention was his downfall. On Monday, June 4, 2012, Magnotta was recognized by the owner of an Internet Café in Berlin, Germany. Café owner Ulku Sungur and worker Kader Anlayisli thought he looked familiar and searched the Internet to verify his identity. Mr. Anlayisli flagged down a police car and shortly after, seven police officers entered the Café and arrested Magnotta. He had been watching porn and reading news articles about himself.
Even though this killer was adept at changing his look, he was still captured in a relatively short period of time, thanks to the Internet.
Coincidentally, this other news is also from Canada, a country not usually known for violent acts. This Saturday, a gunman entered the Eaton Centre, one of the busiest shopping malls in the heart of the downtown tourist area of Toronto, and started firing in the food court. He shot 7 people, killing one. The dead man and another injured party were the targets. The other victims, including a 13 year old boy, were innocent people enjoying a day at the mall. The shooter and the two apparent targets were gang members. The shooter managed to escape before the mall was locked down. The mall is connected to the subway system and has a number of exits to downtown Yonge Street.
Like many such establishments, the mall and the stores within the mall were outfitted with a large number of CCTV cameras. During the ensuing madness, as hundreds of mall patrons ran for their lives, some took time to take video or photos on their cell phones.
So here we have another genius. Or, as Acting deputy police Chief Jeff McGuire put it “One idiot with a gun on a Saturday afternoon in downtown Toronto does not speak to the state of affairs in the city of Toronto.”
Even wearing the ubiquitous hoody, the shooter was identified through the videos. Unlike Magnotta, this guy was smart enough to realize that his photograph was soon going to be posted all over the Internet and the media. He turned himself into police.
The point I am making is this: We get upset about the proliferation of surveillance cameras, a police state and big brother. While it may not have stopped the killing, it has provided the evidence to identify the killer and obtain a conviction in court. When this happened, Toronto police made a plea through the media to request that the public who had obtained cell phone video and photos turn them over aid the investigation.
We are now a society, not just in North America, but across the globe, that is policing itself through technology. The public is doing the surveillance, often for the greater good.
Former FBI Assistant Director Tom Sheer has recruited the best from the FBI, DEA, IRS and Secret Service to build a formidable team at Sheer Investigations. Our private investigators have the sensitivity and experience to handle the most delicate investigations.