I Found An AirTag or Tracking Device in My Belongings? What do I do?

A person placing an Apple Air Tag in someone's wallet without their knowledge.

Many people utilize tracking capabilities in their devices to prevent the loss of those devices and keep track of loved ones. Unfortunately, though, some use these tracking capabilities to harass others or even assist with criminal activity. As highlighted in Good Morning America, Apple AirTags are becoming a tracking tool used for nefarious purposes. The placing of AirTag or other tracking device may be an unauthorized use of an electronic tracking device and may also be one of the two required acts for stalking. Both are punishable under Virginia law, posing a potential threat to your personal safety and security.

In order to prove the unauthorized use of an electronic device in Virginia, there must be a tracking device installed through intentionally deceptive means and without consent, and the device must be used to track another person’s location. In order to prove stalking in Virginia, there must be at least two acts of conduct directed at a person done with the intent to place the person in reasonable fear of death, criminal sexual assault, or bodily injury. Importantly, the acts can be directed at the person’s family or household members rather than the person himself or herself.

The unauthorized use of an electronic tracking device is a Class 1 Misdemeanor in Virginia, meaning that a person convicted of this offense can be sentenced to up to 12 months in jail and/or a $2,500 fine. A first conviction for stalking is also a Class 1 Misdemeanor, though subsequent offenses and stalking in violation of a protective order are felony offenses and may carry a mandatory minimum jail sentence.

If you have found an AirTag or other tracking device in your belongings or your car, you need an experienced attorney to ensure that you are protected from the person who put it there. No two stalking cases are the same and are often decided on minute points of fact and law. Therefore, it is critical to have an attorney experienced in handling these types of charges.
Your safety, and those of your family and household members, is something the attorneys at Select Law Partners, PLLC take seriously. Contact us to speak with one of our experienced attorneys today.

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Bennett Brasfield

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