NEW BEDFORD - Many of us barely know how to use the latest technology, but State Troopers assigned to the Bristol County District Attorney's Office are now experts on dismantling and forensically analyzing such equipment after years of specialized training.

District Attorney Thomas Quinn Thursday unveiled the latest addition to his downtown New Bedford office: a digital forensics lab, allowing detectives to access what could be critical evidence on virtually any device.

Quinn says most of today's communication and planning takes place through people's smart devices. "Cell phones are critical. Computers are critical. I mean, how do most people communicate now? Aren't you people on your cell phones all the time? If it's pertinent to an investigation, there's going to be information helpful to a crime, most likely, in those communications," explained Quinn.

Quinn says such information has been extremely helpful in getting convictions, even in the murder trial of Aaron Hernandez, whose whereabouts and text messages linking him to the murder of Odin Lloyd were found on his cell phone. "And cell phone activity evidence gave the jury a clear understanding of where everyone involved in this heinous crime were at various points of the evening of the murder of Mr. Lloyd and days afterwards."

The new lab cost several thousand dollars, and is accessible to law enforcement officials throughout Bristol County.

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