Usually when we hear Google Street View news, it’s over kitty-cat privacy issues or people peeing in the street. But this time around, the mayhem monitor actually helped solve the kidnapping of a young girl.
Police in Massachusetts were trying to track down a missing 9-year-old girl who had allegedly been kidnapped by her grandmother. They had managed to find the girl’s mobile phone coordinates and traced it to an intersection in Virginia.
Since they were nowhere near Virginia, the policemen turned to Google Street View to help them round up possible hiding-out locations. They identified a building that looked like a motel, confirmed it was one with a subsequent Google search and then called the Virginia State Police, who visited the motel and found the grandmother and the girl.
The moral of this story is: Police know how to Google now. Be afraid. Be very afraid.