Australia Samantha Murphy, 51, last seen leaving her property to go for a run in the Canadian State Forest, Ballarat, 4 Feb 2024 *Arrest* #9

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I'm curious as to what caused them to want to search there in the first place.
Yes I know they say the sniffer dogs alerted them, but what was the reason for the site becoming of interest to begin with.

Hopefully the phone will be able to be accessed. I know there are ways to recover dead phones that have been in water.

I was thinking of the Abby and Libby case.
Maybe Samantha was able to capture something of what happened. A photo of the perp would be good.
The DM has great pictures early on, and often has detail other sources don't, but their hit and miss record for truth means there's always the need for a pinch of salt when relying on them as a source.
RSBM. The DM catches flak for its medical and science reporting — no surprise for a tabloid. But in other news, they hold their own against other media outlets. And let’s face it, they do have the best pictures. How do they pull that off...
In summary, remand prisoners in Victoria have more flexibility and access to resources compared to convicted prisoners. They can stay informed through legal resources and maintain contact with their legal representatives and visitors. However, access to general news sources may be limited, and it’s essential to focus on their legal proceedings during this period2. If you have any other questions or need further assistance, feel free to ask!

    • Many prisons have libraries where inmates can access books, newspapers, and magazines. While these materials may not always be up-to-date, they can provide some information.
    • Legal resources are also available to inmates. These include legal textbooks, case law, and legal databases. Inmates can use these resources to research legal matters, which may indirectly expose them to current events related to court cases, legislation, and legal developments.
  1. Visitors and Correspondence:
    • Inmates can receive letters from family, friends, and pen pals. While these letters may not contain breaking news, they can provide updates on personal matters and local events.
    • Visitors can also share news during their visits. In some cases, visitors may bring in newspapers or discuss recent events with the inmate.
  2. TV and Radio:
    • Some prisons have common areas with televisions. Inmates can watch news programs and stay informed about current events.
    • Similarly, radio programs (if available) can provide information on local, national, and international news.
I am curious as to why Samantha’s phone was separated from her? I would have thought it would have been in her pocket. Unless her phone was taken from her because she had taken photos, as Toots suggested? I think she must have had it in her hand and was using it, and that’s why it was separated from her? But what a stupid move to throw it into a dam! Why not smash it and dispose of it in the garbage? So odd!

When a phone is found in a situation like this, there are several types of data and logs that can be used to potentially link it to an alleged murderer. Here are some key elements that can be examined:
- If the phone has geotagging enabled, photos and videos can have metadata that includes the GPS location where they were taken. This could place the POI at or near the scene.
- Any photos or videos taken shortly before the phone was discarded could provide clues about the events leading up to the disappearance.
- If the phone's location services were enabled, its GPS history can be analysed to see the phone's movements, which might align with the POI's known whereabouts.
- Many apps track location data, which can supplement GPS data.
- Data on which apps were used and when can offer a timeline of activities.
- Forensic experts can often recover deleted files. Detailed metadata from photos can provide timestamps, locations, and other useful information.
- Physical evidence on the phone, such as fingerprints or DNA, can directly link the POI to the phone. DNA is more resilient than fingerprints and can sometimes be recovered from items that have been exposed to elements for a long period of time. Even degraded samples can sometimes be amplified using PCR techniques, so it's worth attempting a thorough analysis regardless of the conditions.
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Anyone know what kind of info might be potentially retrievable from the phone in that condition? Those flip cases are remarkably protective in my experience…
From my understanding it's unlikely they would get any data from the phone having been in water for so long and potentially damaged before it even went in the water. As for fingerprints and DNA the research paper I read yesterday found that fingerprints at least were unlikely to be found after so long but there's still a chance as there is no current in a dam. EDITED to add the amount of retrievable data greatly depends on the model of phone
IMO - It would seem strangely inappropriate for police to be congratulating each other over finding a completely unrelated mobile phone whilst searching for Samantha Murphy.
TBH I find it a little unprofessional that they were congratulating each other at all but I get it they're only human and have been working their butts off for this case.
I think it is a metal “set square” that police use to measure anything found .. length by width … often such items are placed next to evidence when photographed to enable future viewers to identify the size of items found at a later date …

They could just use a bananas for scale like the rest of us lol
RSBM. The DM catches flak for its medical and science reporting — no surprise for a tabloid. But in other news, they hold their own against other media outlets. And let’s face it, they do have the best pictures. How do they pull that off...

They aggressively recruit and pay for local photojournalists to get there and get the pictures when they hear a whisper of a story breaking.

So while local station and paper staff reporters are still climbing out of bed and pulling their socks on, the DM probably already has exclusive pictures they can run with.

Police are human beings and have feelings like everyone else.
I don't see it as unprofessional to show emotion.

It does show how much concern they have for Samantha and her family and for getting some answers for them.
Try to keep in mind also the fact this was a search closed off to the public. There just happened to be a news chopper in the air snooping on them. Not much they could do about it. Good on them. I'm sure they felt a huge emotional relief after all these months. They know she is dead. They want to give the family closure and bring the murderer to justice.
The Daily Mail credible? Is this sarcasm?

Edit. Oh didn't see your wink face.

7 is credible enough they wouldn't state this in print otherwise.
Channel 7 has a history of wrongly identifying people alleged to have committed crimes, and then being taken to court for it.

I prefer to wait until news outlets other than Channel 7 and the Daily Fail state something.
There is a new article in the Herald Sun …. So paraphrased …

A tech specialist for Data Detect, a company which specialises in retrieving data from mobile phones, has said the phone’s contents would be preserved if the phone was a late-model iPhone or Samsung.

He said such models were hermetically sealed so they could be used in water.

Potentially, there will be information of great assistance to investigators, particularly related to the movements of Ms Murphy.

“There would be tracking information. There’d be a lot of data,” the spokesman said.

It is believed the mobile had been in shallow water, hidden from view until the dam level receded in recent months.

Paywalled for some ..

Let’s hope he is correct …. And the phone can lead the Police to Sam soon ….
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