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  • Police Investigate Gizmodo iPhone Story


    Police are trying to determine if Gizmodo violated California state law by buying an iPhone prototype from someone who said he found it in a bar, according to "a law enforcement official" quoted by CNET yesterday. The official also claims that Apple itself asked for the investigation, which, if true, would contradict persistent rumor that the somewhat unlikely story was just an Apple publicity stunt. An executive at Gizmodo's parent company says that police have not asked them any questions yet.

    Reportedly, Apple representatives contacted the Santa Clara County Police, and asked for an investigation of the events surrounding the disappearance of an iPhone prototype last month, and its subsequent appearance and teardown on Gizmodo last week. CNET's Greg Sandoval and Declan McCullagh spoke to a police representative, who says that the investigation may be conducted by a computer crime task force inside the Santa Clara County district attorney's office. While Apple's Cupertino headquarters is in Santa Clara County, the bar where the phone was allegedly lost and found is in Redwood City, the county seat of neighboring San Mateo County. According to California law, any person who finds lost property and "appropriates such property to his own use" is guilty of theft... or, If the value of the property is above $400, grand theft, which is a felony.

    The story has garnered a lot of comment since it was revealed on Monday. Gawker Media (the owners of Gizmodo) paid $5,000 for the prototype, which sources have said is considered stolen goods by Apple. There are a number of elements about the story - such as, for example, why the finder claims he took the phone home with him rather than giving it to the manager of the bar - that have prompted questions about whether the phone was really found or stolen. Some observers looked at the holes in the story (a man walks into a bar with a priceless prototype and leaves it on a bar stool? really?) and wondered if the whole thing was an elaborate stunt by Apple to build up pre-release buzz for the next generation iPhone, but the police investigation suggests that they weren't involved. Gawker's chief operating officer says police haven't been in contact with him about the phone.

    The Santa Clara County computer crime task force, called the "Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team" (REACT) was established in 1997 and pools the tech talents of a number of local jurisdictions. What's considered "Silicon Valley" lies mostly within the borders of Santa Clara County: the Santa Clara Valley -once the largest fruit producing and packing area on Earth - and the city of San Jose, and so the police have had to deal with a lot of high-profile intellectual property issues as well as thefts. Apple involved REACT in an investigation of one of its employees who sold over $100,000 worth of computers on eBay. REACT has more tech-savvy investigators than many local law enforcement agencies, commonly investigaring cybercrimes like denial-of-service attacks of online businesses in Silicon Valley.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Police Investigate Gizmodo iPhone Story started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 31 Comments
    1. plcrules's Avatar
      plcrules -
      lol this will tell us if everything is true
    1. extremzocker's Avatar
      extremzocker -
      still hoping that its not the final iPhone design. i liked the curved back.
      if it is, gizmodo destroyed my anticipation and hype for the stevenote. its not as exciting when you know whats coming.
    1. Pitbull2o08's Avatar
      Pitbull2o08 -
      How can they prosecute Gizmodo, after he called apple to try and return the phone!? It's not their fault apple associates didn't believe him!
    1. matistight@yahoo.com's Avatar
      i still think it's apples way of finding if the prototype look will go over with the public, because if it was lost why cant it be powered on... seems fishy to me. doubt he will be in big trouble, because i guess there is no price on the iphone, even when offered $5,000.... i don't know, this is my opinion
    1. plcrules's Avatar
      plcrules -
      Quote Originally Posted by extremzocker View Post
      still hoping that its not the final iPhone design. i liked the curved back.
      i thought i was the only 1 i dont wanna buy a new case a new dock a new morphine pack just for a new dwsign
    1. rubenmer5's Avatar
      rubenmer5 -
      ^^ +1, agreed with matistigh, this is a show from Apple to see the feedback for New iPhone style. They do all this sharade to cover their tracks.
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      ^^ then don't buy a new phone. Lol. It's time for a design change IMHO

      Also when has apple ever needed to leak something to get publicity. The fact that they are so secretive is enough publicity on it's own. Whoever thinks that apple did this on purpose is out of there mind. A company that has over half of the market of smart phones does not need to test the waters of there design.
    1. mikerlx's Avatar
      mikerlx -
      Glad to see a design change, some of u guys were complianing when the 3GS came out looking like a 3G.
    1. adsonjustin's Avatar
      adsonjustin -
      very interesting...
    1. Antman217's Avatar
      Antman217 -
      Quote Originally Posted by mikerlx View Post
      Glad to see a design change, some of u guys were complianing when the 3GS came out looking like a 3G.
      Totally agree. I actually missed the aluminum back from the original iphone. It actually matched my aluminum macbook but now my 3g doesn't match anything I have from apple. All I can see it match with is the black which aren't even made anymore and white macbooks I guess lol. Anyways I like the aluminum and I didn't have any problems with wifi interfering with the aluminum back so thats ********! But flat back is good enough for me lol!
    1. Tizocman's Avatar
      Tizocman -
      i actually like this design way better
    1. ravelsnip's Avatar
      ravelsnip -
      Quote Originally Posted by rubenmer5 View Post
      ^^ +1, agreed with matistigh, this is a show from Apple to see the feedback for New iPhone style. They do all this sharade to cover their tracks.
      i kindda agree to this :

      This new design sucks big time.
      I was expecting a more slimmer curvy iphone. like the one in the iphone HD dupe commercial.
    1. johnr9412's Avatar
      johnr9412 -
      I love the way the current iPhones look with the curved black backs. And I hated the new look at first, but it's starting to grow on me. Just hope my current screen protector and case will fit the new phone
    1. PStuLovesCrackk's Avatar
      PStuLovesCrackk -
      Even if this went to court, there is no way it would hold up.... They did the right thing and after everything was said and done they returned it...end of story.
    1. wolverinemarky's Avatar
      wolverinemarky -
      will be interesting to see how this plays out and see if this is truly the final model of the next gen iphone I for one like it and will be upgrading to whatever apple releases as long as it has the features
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      There not going after gizmodo they will mostlikely going after the person who sold mechandise that wasn't his o sell.

      And again people why would apple need to leak there new phone??? It would make no sense. An iPhone does not need to be leaked apple does not need the publics approval on the look of any of there future designs. Now that not to say that the employee didn't purposly leave it behind for his own reasoning. I have Been drunk as hell before and would never leave my iPhone sitting sown somewhere and I'm just an end user
    1. stfudvs's Avatar
      stfudvs -
      so if I "lose" my iPhone apple doesn't care, in factthey do nothing to the person who "finds" it and activates it

      but when apple loses a phone somone up for grand Larson

      go **** yourselves apple
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      There not going after gizmodo they will mostlikely going after the person who sold mechandise that wasn't his o sell.

      And again people why would apple need to leak there new phone??? It would make no sense. An iPhone does not need to be leaked apple does not need the publics approval on the look of any of there future designs. Now that not to say that the employee didn't purposly leave it behind for his own reasoning. I have Been drunk as hell before and would never leave my iPhone sitting sown somewhere and I'm just an end user

      Woops have no idea why that double posted. Sorry
    1. elbodude's Avatar
      elbodude -
      Hmmm, not sure what to think. This I do know: The city of Cupertino, CA does not have a police department. They fall under the jurisdiction of the Santa Clara County Sheriff. There is no such thing as Santa Clara County Police. There is such a thing as Santa Clara City Police, but they are not part of Cupertino's jurisdiction. Take this for what it's worth.

      I grew up in Cupertino and my Sister works at Apple. She had heard nothing of this.
    1. UnknownToaster's Avatar
      UnknownToaster -
      I always kinda didn't like the 2g and 3g design because I felt it added a lot of unnecessary heft. After a while it kinda felt nice in the hand but it was still annoying to put in and out of my pocket. I like my 1g. The curve is quick and only on the ends. It works. Its not just a corner that blocks or hurts your fingers, it turns with your fingers allowing a nice grip. Also it is thin and has easy accessibility. The new prototype did kinda disappoint me, but while it has less eye candy, it somehow looks sleeker. Easy accessibility and portability. And really, I'd say that's a nice thing. Besides looking really ugly.

      Quote Originally Posted by stfudvs View Post
      so if I "lose" my iPhone apple doesn't care, in factthey do nothing to the person who "finds" it and activates it

      but when apple loses a phone somone up for grand Larson

      go **** yourselves apple
      Rightfully so. You buy a taco, it becomes your taco. Its your responsiblity to eat it before some weird messed up taco-craving monster nabs it. Its not their taco, its yours, its your responsibility. Apple sold you the ipod, so its yours, not their. The 4g's are their responsiblity. But even though after they sell you the ipod and yet they get to tell you want you can and cant have on it so..

      Quote Originally Posted by stfudvs View Post
      go **** yourselves apple