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Amazon Echo Needed to Help Solve Murder Case

Investigators are trying to get Amazon to give up recordings from an Amazon Echo found in the home where a murder was committed. But Amazon is putting up a fight to protect the privacy of a customer.

The murder happened in November of 2015 in the home of James Bates. According to the investigation, Bates invited two friends to his house for drinks. At some point, the other two men went into the hot tub and according to Bates, he went to bed. When he woke the next morning, one of the men lay face down in the tub. An Amazon Echo was in the room at the time and police are trying to get Amazon to turn in the recordings.

“Amazon will not release customer information without a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us,” the company said in a statement. “Amazon objects to overbroad or otherwise inappropriate demands as a matter of course.”

The case and the request for recordings from Amazon could go to the higher courts. Bates, who was arrested in February on suspicion of first-degree murder, is presently free on a $350,000 bond. A discovery hearing in his case is scheduled for March.

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