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Four charged over murder of carjacking victim who chased thieves with AirTag

AirTag in a keyring

Four people have been charged for jacking a car and killing the driver, after the victim attempted to recover her vehicle by using Apple's AirTag.

On March 19, Victoria Anna Marie Hampton was found wounded by police after a shooting in South West Bakersfield, California. The shooting at 6:32 A.M. resulted in the 61-year-old being taken to hospital that day.

Police say that, following the carjacking, Hampton went after the suspects to try and recover her vehicle. She used a hidden AirTag to track the vehicle, and the car jackers, down.

Hampton died from her injuries on April 1, with a coroner deeming the cause of death to be a shot to the head, reports KGET.

Four suspects have been charged over the matter. David Tyrone Thompson, aged 19, was charged in June with first-degree murder, carjacking, and auto theft. Joseph Bush UV, 23, and Giovanni Garcia-Viscarra, 19, were both charged in July with carjacking, auto theft, and conspiracy.

Fourth-defendant Adam Ransom was sent to Juvenile Court. As his hearings aren't open to the public, Ransom isn't facing a murder charge at the moment.

While keeping track of vehicles and other valuables with AirTag is generally a wise move, it isn't necessarily the best idea to then act upon that information yourself in cases where items are stolen. The usual advice from law enforcement is to provide them with the information and to allow them to deal with the situation.

In April, a Texas truck theft turned fatal after the vehicle's owners tracked it down using AirTag. After catching up, the vehicle's owner shot and killed the suspect while they were inside the truck, possibly in response to seeing a firearm.

While not fatal, an August 22 robbery in New York saw a man's motorbike get stolen. However, the victim tracked down the bike and confronted the thief, only to be rewarded with a broken nose.