Red Bay police equipped for cyber crime
Melissa Cason, Franklin County Times
RED BAY – Computers have become an essential tool for everyday life. Millions of people pay their bills online, shop online, and even try to find the loves of their life online.
Thanks to the computer, many people are telecommuting instead of tracking to work everyday.
While the computer has transformed our world, it has also become a tool in which to commit crimes – from ordering prescription drugs online without a scrip to planning out illegal activity through email and secret files.
In order to fight the age of crime, each law enforcement agency must have someone specially trained to handle cyber-crime.
Lesly Adams, a patrolman for the City of Red Bay, is certified in computer forensics, which enables him to collect and preserve evidence from computers should the need arise.
"It [collecting the evidence] has to be done in a certain manner so that the evidence can be preserved for court," Adams said. "And it takes special equipment to do it."
Adams said that the equipment needed to preserve evidence from a computer is shared throughout the state and can be used by any other officer trained to use it.
He added that paying attention to detail is vital to collecting evidence, because information can be hidden in something as simple as a photograph.
"It's just like processing a murder scene or something like that," Adams said. "You have to pick everything apart."
While Adams has been certified in computer forensics since 2005, he has always had an interest in computers even as far back as high school.
Adams has been a part of the Red Bay Police Department for five years, but he began in law enforcement by becoming an explorer with the constable in Tishamingo County, Miss. before becoming an EMT at the age of 18.
By the time he turned 21, Adams was working as a police officer with the Tishamingo Police Department until he visited Red Bay to participate in a parade.
"I brought one of the patrol cars up here to be in a parade," he said. "And, that's when Chief (Pat Creel) asked if I would be interested in working at the Red Bay Police Department."
Adams answer to that question was "why not," and with two more weeks of training to be certified in Alabama, he was a part of the Red Bay family.