When you face criminal charges or are pressing charges against someone else, it’s extremely important that you gather all of the facts of your case as quickly as possible. How these facts have been obtained also becomes an important question for both the defendant and the prosecutor. With mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, and more becoming part of our daily lives, it is critical that an investigator has the ability to process and analyze these “smart IP-enabled” devices. McCann’s digital investigations (computer and mobile device forensics) combined with our extensive experience in fraud, crime scenes, and law enforcement, are a smart choice for your investigation. McCann has extensive case history in working both for defense and prosecution, helping to gather evidence in support or referral to local, state, and federal law enforcement.
There are numerous terms that are relevant to digital forensics investigations that people browsing our site might not necessarily be familiar with. Therefore, we have compiled a glossary of important terms that you might encounter as you browse the site. If there are any terms not included in this list or if there are any terms you don’t fully understand, please feel free to contact us at McCann and we will be happy to help. Read our Glossary of Criminal Law Terms for explanations of phrases including bid rigging, blackmail, bribery, Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE), etc.
The cases listed below represent a small sample of the hundreds of cases investigated by McCann over the past 28 years. Material facts have been changed to protect the privacy of our clients. Some of the cases discussed combine various issues and materials found in relevant case studies that have been reviewed by McCann Investigators. No attempt should be made to draw any factual conclusions based on the cases discussed. Please contact McCann Investigations for real world cases in which references can be furnished.
Claims of Child Abuse and Possession of Child Pornography by a Priest
In this case, McCann digital forensic investigators were retained by defense attorneys in a charge that their client was a child abuser and engaged in child pornography. The claim, which began with the review of content found on a public access computer at the church’s offices, appeared to indicate that the accused may have been using the computer to review illegal materials. The computer, which was available to anyone, was located outside of the defendant’s office. When the priest was accused, he voluntary turned over his home computer, iPad, iPhone, and access to his cloud storage account. He voluntary provided access to all emails accounts associated to him. After a review of the digital contents of his home and other personal digital property, McCann Investigators were unable to identify any pornographic content of any type, illegal or legal.
Claims of Sexual Molestation by a Care Giver
In this case, McCann digital investigators were asked to review communications between an adult child care worker and a juvenile child in his care. The child care worker had just been arrested on a charge of public exposure, and the family wanted to see if he had developed an inappropriate relationship with their 14 year old son. The family provided the McCann Investigator with the Android phone of the 14 year old son, which was the primary method of communication with the child care worker. Text communication between the parties indicated that a sexual relationship had developed that included the sharing of personal photographs of a sexual nature. The evidence was turned over to local law enforcement.
Statutory Rape: Sexual Communication between an Adult and a Juvenile
In this case, McCann digital investigators were asked to review text communications between an adult male, age 22, and an adolescent female, age 15. The case had not yet been referred to law enforcement, but the family of the female wanted to see what the truth was since the female denied that they had developed a sexual relationship. The communication between the two, apparently, had occurred mostly via text messaging and via instant messaging on Facebook. The smart phone of the female was imaged and deleted text messages were recovered. Text messages between the female and the phone believed to belong to the 22 year old male showed evidence of sexual communication, including a photo of the female involved in a sexual act with a possible third male.
Theft of Credit Card Data in a Private Business
In this case, McCann digital investigators were asked to review possible downloading of thousands of clients’ personal information, including credit card numbers, expiration dates, and security codes. The client, who saved this data for automatic monthly processing, believed that someone in the accounting department downloaded information from more than ten thousand credit cards. They needed to understand quickly if these breaches had occurred so that they could contact their clients for identity theft protection. It was determined that the credit card information, along with other detailed personal information such as social security, etc., had been downloaded by an assistant controller. Notice was provided to the impacted clients and referral was made to local law enforcement. It was later learned that she had sold the information.
Real Estate Development: Non-Disclosure of EPA Stop Work Notices
In this case, McCann Investigators were retained by a client who was facing federal criminal charges related to a technical violation of the federal law regarding the protection of wetlands. Our client, the accused “destroyer of a duck habitat,” claimed that they had obtained the proper permits to engage in land work at the site and were unaware of the notice to stop work that had been provided to his customer, the land owner. McCann investigators were able to show that our client received no such email from the land owner. During forensic discovery of the land owner’s email records, it was determined that they had received notice and decided not to share it with our client. The evidence was used to resolve our client’s issues with the EPA.