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vonVeezelsnider

GM/OnStar in trouble in Canada

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Coles Notes: OnStar refuses Calgary Police request to track missing vehicle of murder victim because the police call it "missing" instead of "stolen" and don't quote a stolen vehicle file number. By the time that OnStar tracks the truck the system has been tampered with.

CALGARY - General Motors Canada officials say the company will revisit policies regarding its OnStar technology to ensure it works as well as possible when police call on them for help.

The comments come after grieving family of a senior slain in an apparent robbery said they were disappointed efforts to enlist OnStar, of which GM is the parent company, to help find his missing truck were met with an initial lack of co-operation.

Earlier this month police picked up two alleged killers, now charged with murdering 77-year-old Rino (Ray) Johnson, in his stolen truck.

His daughter, Bonnie Gillard, said numerous requests by her and police did not convince OnStar to assist in finding it by activating its tracking technology.

"We have a case where the Calgary police called them and told them the investigation was being hindered by us not being able to locate the vehicle," she said.

"This could have been the break for the police to find my dad's murderer."

GM spokeswoman Adria MacKenzie said the case is unfortunate and in no way speaks to an unwillingness to work with police.

MacKenzie said GM is always looking for better ways to work with law enforcement.

The challenge for OnStar in the Johnson case and delay in activating technology stemmed from the fact police said they were looking for a "missing" truck and not a "stolen" one, she said.

"Once law enforcement confirmed it was stolen we activated the technology and unfortunately, it had been disabled," she said.

"It is a difficult situation and we sympathize with the family ... unfortunately, it was a challenge for us as well."

City police confirmed they tried to use OnStar technology to move the investigation forward.

Days after Gillard's dad's body was found in a southeast alley, she made numerous calls to OnStar saying he had been slain and police were looking for his truck.

Gillard said OnStar officials told her that her request to activate technology had to wait until the next day and receive permission from the company's legal department.

They activated it the next day only to learn the tracking technology had been tampered with.

Police found the truck when Mounties pulled it over near Banff days later, with two murder suspects inside.

MacKenzie said the company works closely with police on many fronts. Part of its basic package for OnStar members, for instance, sees them help officers find stolen vehicles or get help to drivers who have been in accidents.

Last fall, OnStar introduced a service to make it easy for police to identify stolen vehicles by activating parking lights, unbeknownst to the thief, and removing the ability to accelerate.

Although the company examines each request for help on a case-by-case basis, it says it will look at whether its policy has room for improvement. "We are trying to work very closely with police so we can meet their needs," MacKenzie said.

Edited by vonVeezelsnider
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The people who did not cooperate with police and activate the tracking system immediately should be fired on the spot.

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Gillard said OnStar officials told her that her request to activate technology had to wait until the next day and receive permission from the company's legal department.

This is the problem of our country.

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This is the problem of our country.

exactly, the victims become the defendants just like here

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exactly, the victims become the defendants just like here

That is f@#ked up. As far as I'm concerned if you are here illegally you have no rights. :angry:

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As unfortunate as this story is. GM has to protect the freedom (at least in the US) of their car buyers that may not have done something and the government is requesting the arrest of the person driving a car that has not be reported stolen.

In America, you are innocent until proven guilty, however, if the rightful owner of a vehicle reports it stolen, then GM/ Onstar has the contractual authority to stop/ track/ put on the parking lights of the vehicle.

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That is f@#ked up. As far as I'm concerned if you are here illegally you have no rights. :angry:

False. Under the Geneva Conventions, which the United States has agreed to abide by, every human being is entitled to basic human rights that cannot be violated legally.

I doubt the case will succeed against him due to his obvious need to defend his property, but one tenant that the rancher, as a US citizen, is held under is that you can only use self-defense with "reasonable force," i.e. you can't claim "self defense" if someone bumps into you and you shoot their brains out (as an extreme example).

If, however, the rancher violated the basic human rights of these immigrants, he may or may not need to pay compensation for it, depending on the trial judge and jury. While he may have been robbed/had his property vandalized in the past, there is no "reasonable expectation" that this completely different group of immigrants were going to do the same in this instance. That would be like saying, for example, that just because every Canadian you met punched you in the face, you found out someone was Canadian and preemptively punched them. Or that every driver of a Fleetwood on your block committed a driveby shooting, so the next time you saw a Fleetwood rolling down the block you blew out its tires. There's just isn't a reasonable cause-and-effect situation here...UNLESS he caught this particular group of immigrants in the act of vandalism.

..."BUT THEY WERE TRESPASSING!" Well, yes. But you can only really ask someone to leave your property, and then if they fail to comply, call the law enforcement. You cannot go vigilante and hold them hostage physically and emotionally (through intimidation) until INS gets to your property--that's kidnapping, and as a US citizen, you cannot kidnap someone in "self defense."

Another question to consider here is how his property was demarcated. What was the fence like? The article says this occurred in a dry wash--was there a fence across it? Is a fence across a waterway of any sort legal in Arizona? State laws vary on this.

Again, with just this article to consider, I cannot jump to any legal conclusion because a) I do not know the veracity of the source, b) I do not know what the full scope of the case is, and neither would a reporter due to the trial process. This would be an interesting case to follow--but like the McDonald's coffee case, when the full details emerge, maybe the "victim" of the lawsuit really was recklessly negligent, or worse, violating the law.

That all said, my gut is that the "emotional distress" will not fly, though any violations of human rights (and their corresponding compensatory values) may or may not depending on the evidence to be presented at trial.

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As unfortunate as this story is. GM has to protect the freedom (at least in the US) of their car buyers that may not have done something and the government is requesting the arrest of the person driving a car that has not be reported stolen.

In America, you are innocent until proven guilty, however, if the rightful owner of a vehicle reports it stolen, then GM/ Onstar has the contractual authority to stop/ track/ put on the parking lights of the vehicle.

Exactly. I can immediately think of an instance where OnStar would be commended for doing the right thing: a serious domestic dispute--crazy ex wants to make life as difficult as possible for the ex, so reports their vehicle as missing, though the owner has not and they are not in fact "missing"--just walked out after an argument.

Frankly, if the sole reason for delay here were that the car was reported as "missing" and not "stolen," why did the officers not correct this immediately and call OnStar back? Finally, if the thieves had disabled the tracking on OnStar, and knew how to do so, they most likely did this fairly soon after stealing it. A delay of several hours would not have changed the outcome--police would have simply determined that OnStar was disabled a few hours sooner than they did. The article even says the calls to OnStar were not made until "days after Gillard's dad's body was found in a southeast alley."

To me, the real question is why the police didn't confirm that the vehicle was stolen on the spot if they already had recovered a slain body.

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Very few states have laws granting the use of deadly force to defend property. Usually those laws coexist with protecting yourself along with property.

However, the threat of deadly force can be used to defend property.

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he just needs to load some shells with rock salt. it sanitizes the wound it creates heheh

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