Originally Posted by jragosta
This is one of the things that is wrong with media today.
Gizmodo committed a crime. Why are the other media outlets sticking their nose where it doesn't belong. Let the police do their jobs. If Gizmodo prevails in court, they can sue at that point.
So, the media looking into a story that a) is of interested to many people and b) has implications for how far the media shield laws go should stop looking into the story because you say they are guilty? They may well be, but thankfully the free press doesn't have to check with you for approval on a story.
In fact, since you are so against the media discussing this, why the hell are you discussing it? Why are you sticking you " nose where it doesn't belong"?
It is pretty hilarious that you have now managed to get even the most diehard fans here to respond to the ridiculousness of your posts.
Originally Posted by esummers
What are you talking about? Do you think the Apple engineer just gave it to them? If you drop something you don't lose ownership of it... If it is worth at least $5000, then it is a felony crime. Since Gizmodo paid $5000 for it, they crossed the threshold. How would you feel if you dropped your phone and someone took it instead of returning it to lost and found?
Sorry, no requirement in the law that says to turn it over to the last and found. Turning it over to one stranger in order to restore it to the owner is the same as turning it over to another. Walking out of the bar with it is also not a crime. At all. So long as your intention is to restore it to the owner. That is unknown and unproven at this point. Where it might have become a crime is when he sold it to Giz. Up to that point, it was still found
property. When he sold it, selling found
property is considered selling stolen
property. That was then the crime. By buying found property, Giz could be guilty of buying stolen property.
Originally Posted by kirkrr
Lost property is lost property - there is no indication that the person who picked up the phone in the bar stole it from the person who left it behind.
No stolen property - no crime committed.
The only crime here was illegal search and seizure by the police. Jason Chen/Gizmodo has had their fundamental Constitutionally guaranteed rights violated.
But this should come as no surprise - very little of what the government does today is Constitutionally legal, and California is even worse than the Feds in that regard. The founding father's must be turning over in their grave.
There could be a crime.
It was indeed lost property and covered by the lost property statutes in Cali. The seller was guilty of nothing when he took it home, if his intent was to return it to the owner, But, upon selling it, its status could change to stolen
. If proven, then that would definitely be a crime. Finder would be guilty of selling stolen property and Giz would be guilty of buying stolen property.
That is why Giz is pushing the idea that they did not actually buy the item but paid only for access to it. If they did not buy the item, then the item was never sold. If the found item was never sold, then there was no crime of buying or selling stolen property and really no case. Whether the argument of buying access to an item is substantively different than buying the item itself stands up in court, remains to be seen. The problem with this argument, that I see, is that the lost property statutes still require the finder to make reasonable efforts to return the item. If he is selling only access to it and this is accepted by the court, then he is then using it for his own benefit(use), which violates the statue. He would then be guilty of theft, but Giz would not be guilty of buying stolen property.
And if Giz is not guilty of a crime, then the search and seizure becomes a serious issue.