A Portland lawyer might have found one of the most extraordinary uses for Apple’s AirTags yet, after using them to expose the unlawful dumping of items that belonged to homeless people in the city.
As reported by Portland Tribune, Michael Fuller used AirTags attached to 16 different items (with permission) belonging to homeless campers in Portland, ahead of a clean-up by a city contractor of a clearing of tents in Laurelhurst park.
Fuller says that tracking information from the AirTags show that some of these items were taken to a waste facility illegally, in contravention of Oregon law which states that the city must collect and retain any property that’s “recognizable as belonging to a person and that has apparent use” to be stored for 30 days. From the report:
Under Oregon law, Portland is required to collect and retain all property that is “recognizable as belonging to a person and that has apparent use” when cleaning up homeless encampments, according to OPB. The confiscated material is stored in a warehouse for 30 days, unless such items are unsanitary or have no obvious use.
Fuller says the items were clean and useful. If the city can’t offer an explanation for the apparently trashed possessions, he says his clients will seek monetary compensation for their losses.
Fuller said that thanks to AirTags he has “proof positive that Rapid Response broke the law and took property that was perfectly clean and sanitary, and belonged to homeless people, and took them to the dump.”
Fuller said that he hoped his actions would convince the city to stop sweeping homeless camps and that he would continue with his fight for as long as the sweeps continue.
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