CASS COUNTY, Tx - Cass County's chief criminal investigator was recently trained in forensic analysis by the United States Secret Service. Cody Sartor now has the knowledge and the equipment to extract evidence from computers.
Sartor said, "The majority of the agencies that have this capability in house are the big agencies. We're talking Dallas, Houston, Austin." That means Sartor, along with First Assistant District Attorney Courtney Shelton are looking at more evidence, faster. Shelton said, "Whenever you recover digital evidence, computers, laptops, cell phones, that sort of thing, you have to get them analyzed. And, there's no one in this area ... that is certified to do that analysis."
It now takes Sartor about a week to process a computer. It's a task, he says, that would take the state crime lab two years because of a backlog of evidence. The office is now using this technology to fight crime. Shelton said, "Cass County definitely has its fair share of sexual assault cases." Sartor added, "We've recovered a bit over a thousand illicit images and videos, and those cases are still under investigation."
They're crimes that prompt a warning about monitoring your child's internet activity. Sartor said, "There are so many crimes that we are working every single day that begin online." Shelton said, "I know of the teen safe app, and there are several others out there with a low monthly fee, get those apps. I know it costs money, but you know, what's that worth? What's your child's safety worth?"
The cyber crime team's only limitation right now is mobile devices, but that training is scheduled for September.