Alexa a witness to murder? Prosecutors seek Amazon Echo data

Markets Associated Press

FILE - This July 29, 2015, file photo shows Amazon's Echo speaker, which responds to voice commands, in New York. A prosecutor investigating the death of a man whose body was found in a hot tub wants to expand the probe to include a potential new ... kind of evidence: the suspect’s Amazon Echo smart speaker. Amazon has called the request “overbroad or otherwise inappropriate." (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) (The Associated Press)

Authorities investigating the death of an Arkansas man whose body was found in a hot tub want to expand the probe to include a new kind of evidence: any comments overheard by the suspect's Amazon Echo smart speaker.

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Amazon says it objects to "overbroad" requests as a matter of practice, but prosecutors insist their idea is rooted in centuries-old legal precedent.

The issue emerged in the slaying of Victor Collins, who was found last year at a friend's home in Bentonville, about 150 miles northwest of Little Rock. The friend, James Andrew Bates, was later charged with murder.

Prosecutors have asked the court to force Amazon to provide data from the Echo that could reveal more clues about the night when Collins was apparently strangled and drowned.