Published: 20 May 2013 11:37 PM
Updated: 21 May 2013 01:01 AM
Karen Brooks Harper
A measure that blocks police from being able to track cellphones without a warrant won preliminary approval by the Texas House on Monday, angering police who said it strips them of a valuable and lifesaving crime-fighting tool.
The proposal by Rep. Bryan Hughes, R-Mineola, had 108 House sponsors but died two weeks ago when the House ran out of time to pass its own bills. It went on as an amendment to a bill by Sen. John Carona, R-Dallas, that deals with technology privacy.
“This is a case where the law needs to catch up with technology,” Hughes said.
The bill makes exceptions for life-threatening situations and for felony fugitives, but opponents say that doesn’t go far enough.
A Dallas Police Association officer said the bill will “kill people” because it will tie authorities’ hands on investigations, missing persons, cartels and other cases.
“This tool is a proven tool to get these guys quickly,” said Frederick Frazier, first vice president of the association.