MIDLAND, Texas (Nexstar) – The Midland Police Department says an Apple Air Tag was used to track down a Midland woman. Now Ray David Valverde Jr. is behind bars, charged with criminal harassment, a third-degree felony.
According to an affidavit of arrest, on January 24, a woman called MPD and informed an officer that she was trying to get to the police station when her ex-husband, identified as Valverde, began following her. The victim told the police that instead of continuing her journey to the station, she decided to go to her brother’s house. When she got home, Valverde left.
At that point, MPD investigators made contact with the victim who showed police video of Valverde’s car as she followed him. She also told police that Valverde had called her phone around 40 times since January 22. The victim later told police in December that she found an Apple AirTag attached to her Tahoe and was convinced Valverde was the one who placed the device on her vehicle. Investigators said the tag tracked the vehicle as recently as December 29.
The victim told police she feared for her life because Valverde had once “severely beaten” her and had previously been charged with assault by strangulation.
According to the affidavit, at that time investigators contacted Valverde who admitted to calling the victim at least 20 times in less than 48 hours. Moreover, Valverde finally admitted that he used the tracking device to track the victim for several months.
Valverde is currently being held at the Midland County Detention Center. No bond has been set at this time.
About the Apple AirTag
According to Apple, if an AirTag is slipped into your belongings or attached to your vehicle, your iPhone is supposed to notify you and the tag will beep.
Android phones, however, will not send an alert. Android users are encouraged to download a free app called Tracker Detect which will search for nearby AirTags. You can also tap an AirTag with any NFC-enabled phone which will display owner information and serial number, which can then be reported to the police.
Tech experts say if you find an AirTag on your car, don’t drive home. Instead, remove the battery by pressing firmly on both sides and twisting counterclockwise. This will instantly disable the device.