A Middletown, Ohio man charged with arson has lost his battle to keep his pacemaker data from being used against him in court. Prosecutors say that the story told to police by Ross Compton, 59, doesn’t match the heart rate data obtained from his pacemaker with a warrant.
“As far as I can tell this is the first case that I can find that relates to the police obtaining a search warrant for pacemaker data,” Jon Marshall, Assistant Butler County Prosecutor said in court Tuesday.
Compton’s story is that he awoke to find a blaze in his house, quickly packed a suitcase that he then threw out a window, and then left the house to get the suitcase and get to his car. According to court documents, a cardiologist who reviewed the pacemaker data said “it is highly improbable Mr. Compton would have been able to collect, pack and remove the number of items from the house, exit his bedroom window and carry numerous large and heavy items to the front of his residence during the short period of time he has indicated due to his medical conditions.” The September 2016 fire at Compton’s home caused almost $400,000 in damages according to local news outlet Journal News.
“There is a lot of other information about things that may characterize the inside of my body that I would much prefer to keep private rather than how my heart is beating,” Judge Charles Parter said in his decision.