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Miami-Dade police officer relieved of duty and charged over AirTag stalking

Find My Precision Finding Airtag Hero
Find My Precision Finding Airtag Hero (Image credit: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore)

What you need to know

  • A Miami-Dade police officer faces a misdemeanor charge after allegedly stalking his ex-girlfriend with an AirTAg.
  • Javier Magarin is accused of planting an AirTag in his ex-girlfriend's car.
  • She was reportedly alerted to the device by Apple's alerts.

A Miami-Dade police officer has been relieved of his duties as a patrol officer and charged with stalking his ex-girlfriend using Apple's AirTags.

From The Miami Herald:

A Miami-Dade police officer has been charged with stalking his ex-girlfriend using Apple AirTags secretly installed in her car to track her whereabouts. Javier Magarin, 27, a patrol officer in the Northwest District, has been relieved of duty, the department said on Wednesday. Last week, the department charged him with misdemeanor stalking and illegal use of a tracking device — investigators say one of the AirTags found in her car was registered to his personal email.

A defense attorney for Mr. Magarin said no formal charges had been brought and that he was an "exemplary officer", however, the report notes on two occasions that Magarin has been charged.

According to the arrest report in the case, Magarin's ex-girlfriend was tipped off by Apple's security alerts to multiple AirTags that were following her, including one in her car and another affixed to the car's undercarriage.

You can read the full report here.

Apple continues to face issues with its AirTags because of their utility not only in finding and recovering lost or stolen goods but also in tracking people without their permission.

Apple stated in February:

We've become aware that individuals can receive unwanted tracking alerts for benign reasons, such as when borrowing someone's keys with an AirTag attached, or when traveling in a car with a family member's AirPods left inside. We also have seen reports of bad actors attempting to misuse AirTag for malicious or criminal purposes. Apple has been working closely with various safety groups and law enforcement agencies. Through our own evaluations and these discussions, we have identified even more ways we can update AirTag safety warnings and help guard against further unwanted tracking.

Apple has added more privacy warnings and improved alerts, as well as making unwanted AirTags easier to find.

Stephen Warwick
Stephen Warwick

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple.