Pedro Bravo, 20, from Florida is accused of kidnapping and strangling his friend Christian Aguilar, and supposedly asked his Siri virtual assistant where to hide the body. Bad blood between the two came as a result of a love triangle, when Aguilar started going out with Bravo’s ex-girlfriend.
According to Gizmodo, the 2012 version of Siri used to helpfully suggest locations such as swamps and metal foundries as ideal for disposing of pesky cadavers. However these days Siri takes a more neutral, and presumably legally acceptable, stance and simply directs users to the top Google search results for any queries related to human body disposal.
Widespread use of personal data in criminal trials
Bravo was charged with murder on Friday September 28, 2012, even though a body was not recovered until several weeks later, when hunters in a nearby forest uncovered a shallow grave. On Tuesday, prosecutors reportedly presented the Siri query as evidence in court, as well as disproving Bravo’s account of events using phone location data.
The amount of information collected by our iPhone’s and other devices has been the subject of much debate of late, and privacy campaigners will surely jump on the news that even the flashlight app Bravo used was collecting data, which shows that his phone light was on for around 48 minutes on the night of the murder.
Inaccurate reports of Bravo using Siri
Updated reports have since specified that Bravo did not in fact make the Siri query himself, but had viewed the image on Facebook. Although some may argue that this strengthens the case for his defense, his legal team still have a large body of evidence to fight against.
For those of us concerned about the encroachment of technology on everyday decisions, the updated reports provide a speck of comfort, but it is surely only a matter of time before a similarly brainless episode proves to be true.