Tracking device found on Bonita woman’s car, new GPS law questioned

BONITA SPRINGS, Fla.- A woman made a scary discovery after taking her car in for a routine oil change.

A GPS tracking device was found zip tied to the car by a mechanic at Tires Plus on Bonita Beach Road.

A report from the Lee County Sheriff’s Office says the woman is in the middle of a legal battle with her ex.

Currently in the state of Florida, this kind of tracking device is not against the law. But, a new law aimed protecting you could end up putting you in more danger.

Governor Rick Scott recently signed a bill that makes planting a monitoring device against the law. There’s another side to the argument, however, businesses are exempt but private investigators are not.

“To just automatically pull a major tool from us I think is unfair and ultimately it’s only going to affect people who have previously been victimized who reach out to us to help them,” said Christopher Knott, a private investigator and managing partner of Naples Security Solutions.

Knott says this law is absolutely needed for the average person but taking away the right from a private investigator is dangerous. He says many of his clients go to him because they’ve been abused or victimized for years. By using a GPS device, the investigator can then let the victim know if they’re being followed or stalked by that abuser.

“It brings peace of mind to some of these people who have been victimized and helps us perform our job and function a lot easier,” said Knott.

He says he would be happy to comply with regulations but making it flat out illegal is not safe. The Florida Association of Licensed Investigators has hired lobbyists in hopes of stopping the bill. As of right now, that law will go in to effect on October 1.

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