Finding people is what investigators do. Commonly called a “Locate investigation” or just a “Locate,” this type of investigation represents a task that is fundamental to providing many investigative services, such as background research, asset profiles, due diligence research, witness interviews and service of process.
In every case the complexity of the locate depends whether or not the person’s name is very common and how much information the client knows about the subject. It is much easier to find a Mike Smith who lived on Hesperia Avenue in Reseda, California during the 1990’s than it is to find Mike Smith who lives somewhere in California.
Depending on what is known, the locate starts with a search of the header information from the three major credit reporting bureaus. This data can be searched dynamically based on what the client knows about the subject.
The nature of the task is to make sure the right person is identified. In most cases, additional research needs to be done to determine which of several candidates is the right subject. Here is where JD Stone’s experience makes a difference. Its experience that gives the investigative edge when dealing with unusual circumstances.
In one case the Client wanted to locate a potential stalker for service of process. Based only on limited comments describing the subject’s own home contained in some old e-mails, JD Stone was able to search satellite maps and locate the stalker’s residence by matching the physical description of the residence to the satellite map.
JD Stone has located run away teenagers, estranged family members, former military buddies, heirs, and many others. In each case the facts are unique but the outcome the same; the subject was found by determining either where the investigation can find information on the person being located, or to whom the investigator can speak to learn about the subject’s last known movements.
Some of the lesser known tactics for locating hard to find subjects includes taking a certain Post Office form to the Post Master to find out if the subject has ever filed a forwarding address in connection with the addresses that appear in their residence history.
Some data sources have searchable access to the list of license plates that the major search engine provider removes from their maps pages. Investigators can search this database for instances of the subject’s license plate being spotted by the vehicles whose cameras and photos create the maps.
This provides a date and location where the subject’s vehicle was spotted. This source can often discover where the subject parks their car over night, which strongly suggests they live somewhere nearby.
JD Stone has used this source to locate many hard to find subjects, including a fellow wanted for embezzlement of his client’s money intended for purchase of gold coins, and numerous parents who illegally removed their minor children from the other parent’s custody.
In all cases, locating the subject is a matter of thoroughness.