Amazon’s Alexa may have overheard a double murder in New Hampshire, prompting authorities to ask the tech giant for evidence related to the case, the New Hampshire Union Leader reports.
The development stems from the January 27, 2017, slaying of Christine Sullivan and her friend Jenna Pellegrini in Farmington, New Hampshire. Sullivan, 48, and Pellegrini, 32, were stabbed to death in the kitchen of Sullivan’s home, which she shared with 36-year-old boyfriend Timothy Verill, according to CBS Boston.
Massachusetts State Police later arrested Verill on two counts of second-degree murder – allegations to which he has pleaded not guilty. Authorities suspect that Verill killed the two women because they were going to tip off police about a drug operation.
At a court hearing on Friday, prosecutors said the Amazon virtual assistant Alexa was in the kitchen at the time of the killings and could have recorded the episode. That may include the removal of the women’s bodies, which police discovered under the home’s porch.
The judge ordered Amazon to produce any recordings made from the day of the murders to the time investigators found the bodies.
“The court finds there is probable cause to believe the server(s) and/or records maintained for or by Amazon.com contain recordings made by Echo smart speaker from the period of Jan. 27 to Jan. 29, 2017… and that such information contains evidence of crimes committed against Ms. Sullivan, including the attack and possible remove of the body from the kitchen,” the judge’s order states.
Amazon told Washington Post it would not release customer recordings unless required to do so by law.
“Amazon will not release customer information without a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us,” an Amazon spokesman told the newspaper. “Amazon objects to overbroad or otherwise inappropriate demands as a matter of course.”
[Feature Photo: Christine Sullivan/Legacy.com; Jenna Pellegrini/Facebook]