Police phone data partnership draws attention

STATE-NEWSRICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ A regional law enforcement initiative to gather and store personal telephone data collected in criminal investigations is drawing attention in Virginia. The American Civil Liberties Union has raised concerns about the legality of the agreement involving five Hampton Roads localities. ACLU of Virginia lawyer Robert Poggenklass said Monday that the agreement allows one agency to share legally obtained telephone data with a second agency, which doesn’t have to get a warrant. The ACLU is investigating whether the program violates a state data collection law. The Virginia attorney general’s office also is informally looking into the matter. Spokesman Michael Kelly says nobody has requested an official opinion. Officials in the participating cities have defended the program, which started in 2012. The cities are Newport News, Hampton, Norfolk, Chesapeake and Suffolk.

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