Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Cell phone discovered in Springfield linked to terrorism?

The word terrorism is never brought up in a search warrant probable cause affidavit filed in August in U. S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, but evidence was included that made it appear that the subject of the search might be connected to plots against the government.

The document was posted on the court docket last week.

The judge granted the request to search an iPhone belonging to a trucker who works at Prime in Springfield. The phone was left in a cafeteria area. Prime's security director was looking through pictures to see if he could find one that might identify the phone's owner when he came across what appeared to be child pornography, according to the affidavit, which was submitted by Jeffrey H. Burnett, a Springfield police officer, who works with the FBI Child Exploitation Task Force.

The video showed what appeared to be a "black male 10 or younger" having sex with a female under the age of 18. The two were speaking in a foreign language.

The security officer continued to look through the images and videos, according to the affidavit. "He observed one video of a man dressed in traditional Middle Eastern attire speaking of the deaths of his brothers and sisters."

Images were also found of the trucker, who is of Middle Eastern descent, standing in front of U. S. Senators' offices, state buildings, hospitals, roads, and bridges. At least one of the images was from Utah, according to the affidavit.

As it was being transported to the FBI office in Springfield, the phone locked out the officers, who did not have the PIN number necessary to reopen it.

The search warrant request, which was approved and has been executed, made no references to terrorism, with the exception of the items listed above, which were included in the probable cause documentation. The request refers only to examining for further evidence on child pornography.

No charges have been filed in connection with the search warrant at this point.

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