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GPS bracelet locked to suspect's leg, but police say he simply took leg off, committed murder

Technically Incorrect: In Washington, DC, a security company fits a tracking device onto the leg of a man awaiting trial. But the firm makes an apparently fatal mistake.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.

A prosthetic leg, perhaps not unlike this one, is at the center of a GPS-tracking mystery.

Getty Images

Quincy Green was arrested on a gun charge.

Pending his trial, he was fitted with a GPS tracker and was on home confinement.

However, as The Washington Post reports, the DC resident's tracker was telling police he was barely moving during a 72-hour period.

But on May 19 Dana Hamilton was shot dead in southeast Washington.

Police suspected 44-year-old Green. Eyewitnesses and police officers said they had seen him moving about on the streets during that time. One eyewitness even identified him as the alleged killer.

But the data from the GPS tracker said he had barely moved around his home.

What emerged is that an employee of Sentinel Services, the company responsible for fitting the trackers, had put the device over Green's sock. On his prosthetic leg.

Green had allegedly left that leg in a box at home and gone out into the world using a spare prosthesis.

Neither the DC police nor Sentinel responded to a request for comment. However, Sentinel told the Post that this was "absolutely human error."

The company's spokesman said protocol hadn't been followed. The device is supposed to be in contact with skin.

The police are understandably not happy.

"I don't understand how someone could put this device on a prosthetic leg," Sgt. Matthew Mahl, chairman of the DC police union told the Post. "It is frustrating for us as police officers to have one of our defendants released, especially when talking about dangerous crime like guns -- and then to know that the accountability for these defendants isn't always up to par."

As in all areas of life and business, it's always worth questioning the data.