Mobile Phone Tracking App Leads to Scottsdale Burglary Suspects

A Scottsdale burglary victim used his mobile phone's tracking app last night to pinpoint the locations of two suspects, who were then arrested by police.

A short while before the high-tech bust, two people reported to the cops that a couple of dudes had broken into their home near the Loop 101 and Thunderbird Road.

The victims said they "scared off" the guys after seeing them in the backyard trying to open a sliding glass door just before midnight, according to a police write-up, but that the suspects had apparently managed to get into a different part of the home and stolen the mobile phone and other things. They told cops they'd seen a brown and white minivan leaving the area.

When the cops came out to the home, one of the victims got on his computer and launched his tracking app. The stolen phone was in the area of 6800 East Mayo, they learned.

Sure enough, cops in that area soon saw a minivan matching the one described by the victims. Police found a reason for a traffic stop, pulled over the van and found several stolen items.

Damien Armour, 22, of Gilbert, and Raul Montiel, 19, of Mesa, were booked into jail in connection with potential burglary charges.

Tracking app or not, mobile phones are like homing devices whenever they're turned on. Police frequently use them to track suspects in undercover cases. We're not sure if that still works when they're turned off, though -- might depend on the phone.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.