Tweets Used in Fatal Train Crash Investigation

By: Litsa Pappas Email
By: Litsa Pappas Email

HARRISONBURG, Va --A train crash killed two college students on Monday morning. One of the victims was Elizabeth Nass, a James Madison University student.

Rose Mayr, the other person killed in the train accident tweeted a picture of her and Elizabeth Nass' legs about 20 minutes before they died. Elizabeth Nass also tweeted before she died, saying she and Rose were drinking on the Ellicott City sign. Now, these seemingly ordinary tweets may be used as clues to figure out what caused the train to derail.

Police are turning to social media more and more to solve their cases. They say Facebook and Twitter can tell them exactly where someone was and what they were doing around the time of an event.

Lt. Kurt Boshart with the Harrisonburg Police Department said social sites help them with local cases. He said the department will usually assign an extra person to research someone's social media activity for an investigation.

"You can definitely get more information now, and people are leaving more information out there,” said Lt. Boshart. “They're saying things and putting it down. They're documenting their thoughts now, where before we didn't have that."

Boshart said social media does add extra work to the investigation since there is so much more information out there now.

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