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Cell phone tracking apps frustrate Westside family

5:18 PM, Dec 16, 2013   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A Westside family had hoped for better results when their 12 year-old daughter's $900 cell phone was stolen in a snatch-and-run incident last weekend.

A tracking app helped Micah Moody locate at times his daughter's phone when it was turned on.  Moody says JSO told him using technology to track a stolen phone is just one step in the process.

"One officer said if they can go up there and they say they don't have it or you cannot come in a search, that they are stopping," said Moody who spent the weekend tracking the cell phone his daughter saved money to buy.

The incident happened Friday afternoon when Moody's daughter was at the Murray Hill Playground visiting with a friend. Before she knew anything someone snatched the phone and took off running, said Moody.

Shannon Hartley, who is a JSO public information officer, said tracking apps help, but that in most cases more is needed to retrieve a stolen phone.

"We still have to follow our investigative techniques and tactics and make sure following due process," said Hartley.

In some cases Hartley said a search warrant would be the next step.

Moody says he's planning now to make an insurance claim on the stolen phone, an unexpected expense.

Moody says he learned something trying to get his daughter's phone back.

"Police are limited in what they can do as far as I can tell," said Moody. 

First Coast News

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