Earlier this week, the police were looking for a former guest who attacked a mother and son in Queens. David Higgins and his parents let Emmanuel Polanco live with them, until they realized Polanco was stealing from them. Two weeks after kicking him out, Higgins found Polanco back in the home, stealing other items. Polanco stabbed Higgins and beat his mother with a baseball bat. Before dying of his injuries, Higgins was able to tell the police Polanco was the attacker.
The police managed to track Polanco down by having one of his friends instant message with him. From Newsday:
Detectives went to that friend's house and persuaded him to look for Polanco online.
The friend agreed, sources said, and was able to locate Polanco and chat with him via instant message.
"'I'm in some kind of trouble,'" one source quoted Polanco telling the friend. "He lied about some details but he basically fessed up to what had happened," the source added.
More importantly, sources said, the friend kept Polanco online long enough for police to call the NYPD's Computer Crimes Squad, which determined the IP address for the computer Polanco was using.
The IP address -- the Internet version of a street address -- came up as being connected to a home on Roosevelt Avenue in Jackson Heights, where another of Polanco's friends lives.
Polanco was found and charged with second degree murder, robbery, burglary, assault and weaopns possession.