The story of how the FBI finally tracked down notorious fugitive Lynn Cozart, using its brand-new, $1 billion facial recognition system, seems tailor-made to disarm even the staunchest of skeptics.
Cozart, a former security guard in Beaver County, Pennsylvania, was convicted of deviant sexual intercourse in 1996. According to court filings, he had molested his three juvenile children, two girls and one boy, from 1984 through 1994. It wasn’t until May 11, 1995, that the children’s mother came forward and told the Pennsylvania State Police what Cozart had been doing. He was convicted, but he failed to show up for his sentencing hearing in April 1996. Federal agents raided his home, interviewed family members and released photos of the man to the general public.
Their efforts failed. Months, then years, passed. In August 2006, the Cozart case was featured in “America’s Most Wanted,” the national television program, under a segment titled “Ten Years of Hell for Three Children.” Still, no leads came in.
The case went cold.