As law enforcement and government investigators become more familiar with Tesla's built-in dashcam (TeslaCam) and Autopilot-camera-based Sentry Mode security features, they may prove very helpful with solving crimes.
FBI Special Agent, Casey Anderson, prepared an affidavit last week related to an incident that occurred in December of 2020. It involved alleged tyre slashing, arson, and a potential attack against a church. It appears the incidents were motivated by race.
According to the affidavit shared by Teslarati, 44-year-old Dushko Vulchev destroyed the Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Presbyterian Church in Springfield, Massachusetts. This wasn't the first time Vulchev had trouble with the law.
The reported incidents involve several fires at the church, as well as tyres of a BMW and Tesla slashed nearby. The Tesla vehicle involved was also missing a wheel. Two earlier fires at the same church were determined to be arson by the authorities. It wasn't until a few weeks later that more fires were set and the church was eventually destroyed. On the day the church was destroyed, a nearby Dodge Charger had its tyres slashed.
The authorities have a bunch of video evidence from various security cameras that they believe shows Vulchev involved in the crimes. However, Vulchev may have completely given himself away as he slashed the tyres of a Tesla. The car was able to provide the FBI with clear shots of the person they already saw on other videos. The Sentry Mode footage shows Vulchev slashing the Tesla's tyres, stealing a wheel, and putting stolen items in the trunk of his Chevrolet Cruze. The Cruze appears in multiple videos related to the case.
Agent Anderson said in his affidavit that he's aware of the Tesla's camera system, and he has reviewed the Sentry Mode videos. He also says he can identify Vulchev in the footage. Anderson shared during an interview via Teslarati:
“The video footage from the Tesla shows Vulchev at a close distance crouching near the Tesla and using a tyre iron to remove the wheels. Additional Tesla video footage captured Vulchev removing one of the Tesla’s wheels and placing it in the boot of Vulchev’s car. Vulchev’s face is clearly visible in the video."
Vulchev and his Chevy Cruze were also seen near the church around the time of the fires and the tyre slashings.
Fast-forward to about a week later and Vulchev was arrested after reports of a vehicle driving erratically. He was pulled over by the police who were aware of the ongoing investigation. The alleged criminal was wearing some of the same clothes that were captured on camera, and the FBI has determined that he may have been living out of his car.
Vulchev's computer, which was found in his car, had evidence of his views against non-white people. The FBI found messages to Vulchev's ex-girlfriend, who has a lifetime protective order against him. The suspect's phone also had photos of guns, Adolf Hitler, and a "White Live Matter" sign.
At this point, Agent Anderson believes the FBI has probable cause to charge Vulchez with the crimes related to the church fires. Visit the source link below for more details, as well as FBI Special Agent Casey Anderson’s affidavit in its entirety.