Using Social Media in Law Enforcement

It's hard to hide when everyone in the world is looking for you. That's the idea propelling the push by law enforcement to deputize the planet with the help of social media.

Canadian police are trying to identify a man who has sexually abused a young girl but traditional investigative techniques have been crashing into dead-ends in the quest to track him down.

Police have a picture of their suspect. That's the photo in the image attached to this story. The image was lifted from video in which, authorities say, the man is sexually abusing a girl who appears to be approximately three-years-old. The video is several years old. The girl would be 10 to 12-years-old today.

This case brought Canadian police to Omaha Thursday to attend a Social Media In Law Enforcement conference. They hope to use the event to launch a campaign aimed at tracking down the elusive predator.


Scott Mills, with the Toronto Police Service, said, "This is our best chance to identify an online child sex predator that we've known about since 2005 and try to rescue the victim.”

Officer Mills says law enforcement is slowly but surely engaging the power of social networking to cast a wider net. They're not asking the public to do their job. They're hoping for a better view of the terrain.

“We aren't asking the public to go out and be investigators and investigate things," he said. "What we are doing is asking them to help the investigators by sharing an image so that we can get the tip either directly to the police or anonymously by crime stoppers.”

The Canadian post is making its way through the wires that link Facebook pages around the world.

Do you know who this man is?

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