Civil Air Patrol
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CAP marks 1,000th cellphone mission

March 16, 2017

Over 300 lives saved through cellular forensics team’s efforts since 2006

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Alabama – Civil Air Patrol’s National Cellular Forensics Team participated in its 1,000th mission earlier today. The mission ended, like hundreds before it, in a “save.”

“The 1000th cell phone mission has been conducted and it was a success,” said Col. Brian Ready, former Arizona Wing commander and one of the members of the cellular forensics team, which the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center has credited with helping save more than 300 lives over the past 11 years. Maj. Justin Ogden and Maj. Jerad Hoff, both members of Arizona Wing, are also key members of the Team.

Today’s mission involved a missing boater near Naples, Florida. Using information from cellphone forensics, the U.S. Coast Guard was redirected to a site approximately 15 miles away from where they had been searching. With this new data, the Coast Guard was able to find the missing boater about 20 minutes after the information was relayed.

“It’s pretty nice to have that be our 1,000th mission,” said Maj. Justin Ogden, who founded the cellular forensics team of citizen volunteers, each longtime members of CAP. “It’s obvious the info provided by Brian and (Maj.) Jerad (Hoff) made a direct impact on the outcome of this mission. I’m pretty proud of those guys.”

Today’s “save” is the 310th credited to the team since Ogden began his work in 2006 — first using analysis techniques to manually search through cellular phone data and later developing customized software to automate the effort.

In addition to the 310 saves, the team also has been credited with nearly 400 finds since 2006.

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