RI bill would help cops track cellphones

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Cellphone providers would have to provide data about the location of a missing person's cellphone if police determine the person is in danger under legislation introduced in Rhode Island's General Assembly.

One of the bill's sponsors, state Sen. James Doyle, says the legislation could save lives by ensuring that police can quickly track a person's phone if they believe they are in danger. He says that now, cellphone providers are often reluctant to offer up the information for fear of a lawsuit. Doyle's bill was announced on Tuesday.

The proposal is modeled after a law in Kansas that was passed following the 2007 disappearance and murder of an 18-year-old woman. Her cellphone provider initially refused to provide information on her phone's location, information that ultimately led authorities to her body.

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