Twitter users crowdsource the identification of suspects in Philadelphia hate crime

Gigaom

By now, many people have heard about how [company]Twitter[/company] and other forms of social media can be used by reporters like British blogger Eliot Higgins to track down terrorists in Iraq and Syria — but those same skills can also be used in more day-to-day circumstances as well. For example, on Tuesday night, several otherwise unconnected Twitter users managed to quickly identify the suspects in a brutal attack on a gay couple in downtown Philadelphia.

As part of their investigation into the attack — which put both men in the hospital with broken bones, and resulted in one member of the couple having his jaw wired shut for several days — police in Philadelphia released a video of a group of men and women they said were involved in the assault, a video that showed them walking down the street on the night of the incident.

What unfolded after that…

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