Kevin Barrera was shot to death in 2009, and his father, Jose Barrera, who hails from Richmond, California, made the unwelcome cyberspace discovery last week. It’s believed that Google Maps’ satellite camera captured the moment that police found his body, before uploading the image to its website.
Brian McClendon, Google Maps’ vice president, confirmed on Monday that they now intend to take down the offensive picture.
He stated, “Our hearts go out to the family of this young boy. Google has never accelerated the replacement of update satellite imagery from our maps before, but given the circumstance we wanted to make an exception in this case.”
McClendon has confirmed that Google have now made contact with the Barrera family, admitting that they have “let them know [that they’re] working hard on the update.” It’s believed that the image will finally be replaced in eight days.
Google Maps’ picture shows a police cruiser and a number of officers, as they stand above what looks to be a dead body near a set of railway tracks. This image is believed to have been taken on August 15, 2009, the day that he was found.
Discussing the discovery, Jose Barrera told KTVU-TV in Oakland, “When I see this image, it’s still like that happened yesterday. And that brings me back to a lot of memories.” Kevin’s killer was never found.
Barrera admitted that he planned to complain to Google, and he was already making efforts to contact lawyers who would help in his efforts to get it taken down.
He stated, “What’s the point to show those pictures to the people, you know, pictures of my dead son?”
Google Maps usually declines requests from people who ask if they can remove offending images. Their privacy page asserts, “Your privacy and security are important to us. The Google Maps teams takes a number of steps to help protect the privacy and anonymity of individuals when images are collected for Street View, including blurring faces and license plates.”
It then adds, “You can easily contact the Street View team if you see an image that should be protected or if you see a concerning image.” This also includes the removal of violent and nude images.
You can look at the offending, and disturbing, picture below: