Apple Watch data helps police crack murder case

Apple Watch 3 Heart

We’ve heard stories about the Apple Watch saving lives multiple times, but a new report has highlighted how it can be used as a key piece of evidence in a murder case. A 57-year-old Australian woman named Myrna Nilsson died while wearing the smartwatch in September 2016, leading investigators to analyze the heart rate data and make an arrest.

The accused in the case is Caroline Nilsson, the victim’s 26-year-old daughter-in-law. At the time of the murder, Nilsson had claimed that her mother-in-law had been attacked by a bunch of men who had entered her home after a road rage incident.

Prosecutor Carmen Matteo now says this story was made up and the entire home invasion scenario had been fabricated. She proved this with evidence from a forensic expert who determined that the victim’s Apple Watch had recorded a burst of heavy activity, followed by a period of less activity, and finally no activity.

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According to Matteo, the Apple Watch data indicates that there was an ambush-type attack, followed by a period of unconsciousness, and finally death. This all happened within a 7-minute window. If taken at face value, then this time period contradicts what Caroline Nilsson had said about her mother-in-law arguing with her attackers for 20 minutes.

Nilsson was denied bail at the court hearing where all this evidence was presented and is set to return to court on June 13. She’s denying the murder charge, but the case against her is pretty strong thanks to the Apple Watch.