Criminal Defence Case Study – Violent Disorder – Cell Site Analysis
The following is an anonymised case study based on a real assignment conducted by CCL-Forensics for a criminal defence solicitor
A man was accused of being involved in violent disorder in an inner-city suburb. He maintained that he was at home at the time – five miles from the crime scene. He had used his mobile phone several times at the time of the incident. (The attribution of the phone to the individual was accepted in court.)
Initially, the solicitor had dismissed using cell site analysis because of the comparatively short distance between the crime scene and the man’s home. They had (understandably) thought the mobile phone mast coverage would be too great to prove their client’s version of events.
However, they called CCL-Forensics and our cell site experts were able to analyse the data from the phone company and carry out a number of surveys.
Although the two locations were a relatively short distance apart, the surrounding landscape indicated that the client could not have used the phone mast he did if he had been at the incident.
The survey results confirmed that the mast provided service at his home address, but not around the area of the incident. Even though the call in question was not at the exact time of the incident, CCL-Forensics’ expert gave evidence that it would not have been possible for him to have moved between the locations quickly enough to have been present at the scene during the incident.