Police use Google search history, location data to track suspect in Arizona murder

An Arizona man was arrested in connection to a March murder after police discovered his search history and location from records provided by Google, authorities said Tuesday.

Jorge Luis Molina, 23, was arrested Dec. 12 in the murder of Joseph Knight after police obtained warrants to search his Google history, the Arizona Republic reported. Knight was found dead on March 14 from apparent gunshot wounds.

When police investigated the murder, authorities discovered a white car driving away from the area where Knight was murdered. Avondale police requested records from Google about accounts that were in the area at the time of the killing. One account belonged to Molina, 12 News reported.

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Molina appeared to own a white Honda and his search history also allegedly included the terms “sniper I-17” and “Phoenix shooter today,” 12 News reported, citing court documents.

Molina initially denied having any knowledge of a shooting or murder that had taken place, but when presented with the search history he did not provide an explanation to authorities, the Arizona Republic reported, citing court documents.

The suspect was arrested at a Goodyear store where he worked and police failed to find a gun or shell casings, the newspaper reported. Police reportedly found marijuana and a glass pipe in the vehicle.

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Molina was arrested on suspicion of premeditated first-degree murder, discharging a firearm within city limits, discharging a firearm at a residence, drive-by shooting, marijuana possession and drug paraphernalia possession. He was being held in Maricopa County Jail on $500,000 bail.