November 14, 2018 2:26 pm
Updated: November 20, 2018 5:37 am

Alexa, who killed these women? U.S. judge orders Amazon to provide Echo’s audio files

WATCH: New Hampshire judge wants Amazon to turn over possible recording of double homicide

A A

In hopes of solving a double homicide case, a judge is turning to Amazon’s Alexa, who may have captured the chilling moment two women died in a New Hampshire home.

In January 2017, 48-year-old Christine Sullivan and 32-year-old Jenna Pellegrini were stabbed to death in Sullivan’s home in Farmington, N.H.

READ MORE: Amazon’s Alexa is randomly laughing at people, and the company is trying to fix it

Prosecutors said Sullivan was stabbed eight times and her skull was fractured. Pellegrini, who had been staying in the home, was stabbed 43 times, officials said.

Timothy Verrill, 36, who is charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of the women, has pleaded not guilty and is due to stand trial next year.

Amazon’s Echo speaker with the Alexa voice assistant was reportedly on the kitchen counter when Sullivan was killed and may have picked up what happened before and after her death.

WATCH: Amazon’s Alexa records family’s conversation, sends it to random contact


Story continues below

Although police seized the Echo when they investigated the crime scene, any recordings are stored on Amazon servers.

On Nov. 5, Superior Court Justice Steven Houran ordered Amazon to provide a recording of it, saying “there is probable cause to believe” the Echo device may have captured the killing.

“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 the Echo smart speaker from the period of January 27, 2017 to January 29, 2017,” Houran wrote in the ruling.

“And that such information contains evidence of crimes committed against Ms. Sullivan, including the attack and possible removal of the body from the kitchen.”

READ MORE: Police seek Amazon Echo smart speaker data to help solve murder case

But Amazon is fighting back and said it would not hand over any data without a binding legal demand, according to the Associated Press.

“Amazon will not release customer information without a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us,” Amazon said in a statement. “Amazon objects to overbroad or otherwise inappropriate demands as a matter of course.”

This is not the first time the tech giant has been ordered to turn over recordings in order to help solve a homicide.

Last year, Amazon agreed to hand over data from an Echo that may have been operating when a homicide took place in Arkansas in November 2015. But Amazon only gave the data after a suspect, who owned the speaker, agreed to release the information.

WATCH: Amazon Echo may hold clues in an Arkansas murder case

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Report an error

Comments

Comments closed.

Due to the sensitive and/or legal subject matter of some of the content on globalnews.ca, we reserve the ability to disable comments from time to time.

Please see our Commenting Policy for more.