Gizmodo affidavit says roommate's tip led police to iPhone

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Police were alerted to investigate Brian Hogan's possession of the prototype iPhone after his roommate called Apple Security out of fear she might be considered an accomplice in the theft.



A new report by Kim Zetter published by Wired identified the roommate named in the affidavit, and reported that she contacted contacted Apple after Hogan connected the prototype iPhone to her computer.



The investigating detective wrote in the affidavit that "[The roommate] contacted Apple in order to absolve herself of criminal responsibility.? The tip resulted in police preparing a search warrant for Hogan's apartment.



Zetter reported that the roommate contacted police again two days later, before the search warrant had been served, as Hogan and his other roommate, Thomas Warner, were preparing to remove evidence from their home, including a desktop computer, serial number stickers from the iPhone, a thumb drive and a memory card.



That tip sent police on a chase following both Hogan and Warner in different directions. The police found Hogan at his parents house, and Hogan then called Warner. Both men eventually cooperated in divulging the location of the items, which were scattered in various locations: the PC had been left at a church, while the stickers were dropped at a gas station and the other items had been thrown in a bush.



The roommate had also reported to Apple "that Hogan had found the phone and had been offering it to news outlets in exchange for a payment, despite having identified Powell as the rightful owner from a Facebook page visible on the phone?s display when he found it."



In contrast with Wired's original report which suggested Hogan was diligently working to find a news organization that could help him return the phone, the affidavit says Hogan reportedly told his roommate, "Sucks for him [the Apple engineer]. He lost his phone. Shouldn't have lost his phone."



The roommate also revealed that Hogan had told her he had obtained a total of $8,500 from the stolen phone, and that he was expecting another bonus from Gizmodo once Apple officially announced the product. Wired's earlier report described Hogan's transaction as "sharing."



After selling the prototype to Gizmodo, the affidavit revealed that Steve Jobs contacted the site's editor, Brian Lam, to ask for its return. Lam "responded via the e-mail address...that he would return the iPhone on the condition that Apple provided him with a letter stating the iPhone belonged to Apple."



The affidavit also notes that Apple reported that the iPhone prototype was "invaluable" and that "the publication of Gizmodo?s story was 'immensely damaging' to the company, because consumers would stop buying current generation iPhones in anticipation of the upcoming product," according to Zetter's report.



Apple also complains in the affidavit that Gizmodo's disassembly of the prototype left it damaged. The affidavit also says that the photos Gizmodo took and published were an act of copying trade secrets, and that Gizmodo's Jason Chen was under investigation for receipt of stolen property.



That indicates that the affidavit used for the search warrant was not merely an attempt to discern Chen's sources as a journalist, but rather the investigation of criminal conduct, which shield laws can not absolve journalists from.



Zetter noted that the affidavit "supports the story, offered by Gizmodo and Hogan?s attorney, that the phone was found, and not stolen from the Apple employee," noting that the engineer said it was "possible, but unlikely, that it was stolen from the bag" he had placed it in.



"However," Zetter added, "it?s generally considered theft under California law if one 'finds lost property under circumstances that give him knowledge of or means of inquiry as to the true owner' and yet appropriates the property for his own use 'without first making reasonable and just efforts to find the owner and to restore the property to him.'"
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 309
    walshbjwalshbj Posts: 864member
    any doubt he knew he was committing a crime now?
  • Reply 2 of 309
    tomhayestomhayes Posts: 128member
    No?



    Did they leak the phone themselves?



    No.
  • Reply 3 of 309
    foo2foo2 Posts: 1,077member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by walshbj View Post


    any doubt he knew he was committing a crime now?



    and what's the penalty for knowingly destroying evidence of a crime?



    Hogan's quotes provided by the roommate would perhaps be considered hearsay and inadmissible in a court of law, but Hogan's actions speak louder anyway.
  • Reply 4 of 309
    stormjstormj Posts: 42member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post


    and what's the penalty for knowingly destroying evidence of a crime?



    Hogan's quotes provided by the roommate would perhaps be considered hearsay and inadmissible in a court of law, but Hogan's actions speak louder anyway.



    You're not a lawyer. The quotes would be admissible because they are statements by a party opponent.
  • Reply 5 of 309
    stormjstormj Posts: 42member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post


    and what's the penalty for knowingly destroying evidence of a crime?



    Hogan's quotes provided by the roommate would perhaps be considered hearsay and inadmissible in a court of law, but Hogan's actions speak louder anyway.



    it's called, among other things, obstruction of justice.



    This guy is in a lot of trouble. And the more trouble he's in, the more trouble Chen is in.



    I feel sorry for Chen. He was hung out to dry by Gizmodo. They gave him bad advice.
  • Reply 6 of 309
    The only thing that hurts Gizmodo in all of this is Knowledge of the origins of the phone.

    This, of course, has been missed by all, but is relevant. If Gizmodo had said: "We have obtained what we believe to be a prototype of the next iPhone from a confidential source" With no mention of Powell, and feigned ignorance throughout, they would have had a much greater defense.



    As it stands, though it was checkbook journalism, they did practice journalism and the damned parties are Hogan and Warner. Gizmodo is ancillary to any type of "trade Secrets" violation.



    As for the extortion, asking for a letter stating the phone is Apple property isn't extortion. Inconsiderate? Yes. Extortion? No.



    As for the possibility that people didn't buy the current models due to the new model being imminent, that only applies to Mundanes, if at all. That onus falls on Apple for having such a predictable cycle and in all honesty SHOULD be deemed inadmissible, though it will probably hold some bearing anyway.



    The parties at major fault are Hogan, Warner & Apple. Gizmodo was just "along for the ride", for those that insist on the idiotic car analogy to this day.
  • Reply 7 of 309
    tipttipt Posts: 36member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by harleighquinn View Post


    The only thing that hurts Gizmodo in all of this is Knowledge of the origins of the phone.

    This, of course, has been missed by all, but is relevant. If Gizmodo had said: "We have obtained what we believe to be a prototype of the next iPhone from a confidential source" With no mention of Powell, and feigned ignorance throughout, they would have had a much greater defense.



    As it stands, though it was checkbook journalism, they did practice journalism and the damned parties are Hogan and Warner. Gizmodo is ancillary to any type of "trade Secrets" violation.



    As for the extortion, asking for a letter stating the phone is Apple property isn't extortion. Inconsiderate? Yes. Extortion? No.



    As for the possibility that people didn't buy the current models due to the new model being imminent, that only applies to Mundanes, if at all. That onus falls on Apple for having such a predictable cycle and in all honesty SHOULD be deemed inadmissible, though it will probably hold some bearing anyway.



    The parties at major fault are Hogan, Warner & Apple. Gizmodo was just "along for the ride", for those that insist on the idiotic car analogy to this day.



    Ok you are clearly not a lawyer.
  • Reply 8 of 309
    ...she contacted contacted Apple...
  • Reply 9 of 309
    thomprthompr Posts: 1,516member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by harleighquinn View Post


    The only thing that hurts Gizmodo in all of this is Knowledge of the origins of the phone.

    This, of course, has been missed by all, but is relevant. If Gizmodo had said: "We have obtained what we believe to be a prototype of the next iPhone from a confidential source" With no mention of Powell, and feigned ignorance throughout, they would have had a much greater defense.



    As it stands, though it was checkbook journalism, they did practice journalism and the damned parties are Hogan and Warner. Gizmodo is ancillary to any type of "trade Secrets" violation.



    As for the extortion, asking for a letter stating the phone is Apple property isn't extortion. Inconsiderate? Yes. Extortion? No.



    As for the possibility that people didn't buy the current models due to the new model being imminent, that only applies to Mundanes, if at all. That onus falls on Apple for having such a predictable cycle and in all honesty SHOULD be deemed inadmissible, though it will probably hold some bearing anyway.



    The parties at major fault are Hogan, Warner & Apple. Gizmodo was just "along for the ride", for those that insist on the idiotic car analogy to this day.



    Gizmodo is guilty as hell. Did you miss the part where Steve Jobs himself called Jason Chen and asked for the phone back the DAY BEFORE Chen posted the pictures? Gizmodo knew exactly what they had when Jobs asked for it back. They had no business playing games and then leaking trade secrets at that point.



    Thompson
  • Reply 10 of 309
    foo2foo2 Posts: 1,077member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by stormj View Post


    You're not a lawyer. The quotes would be admissible because they are statements by a party opponent.



    cool! Indeed IANAL, but I gather that Hogan can deny under oath having made the statements, but his actions are consistent with having made them.



    If you're a lawyer, stormj, these forums need more of your input--especially if you know IP law!

    If you're not a lawyer, then you need to disqualify yourself or not make forthright assertions about the law.
  • Reply 11 of 309
    thomprthompr Posts: 1,516member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by stormj View Post


    I feel sorry for Chen. He was hung out to dry by Gizmodo. They gave him bad advice.



    You feel sorry for him? Sorry?



    Who cares what advice he got? He should have had the same common sense that the roommate did. Even she - who had nothing to do with this - had concerns for the Apple engineer that lost the phone. What did Chen do? He not only went ahead with his scoop, he also broadcast the name of the engineer (but not his so-called "source", who is obviously just a thief now).



    Jason Chen has ZERO common sense, and THAT is why he's in deep doo-doo now. So stop being an apologizer. Stupid is as stupid does.



    Thompson
  • Reply 12 of 309
    Charges have not been filed but you're going on record as saying the individuals are guilty of a crime.



    Not a mistake many journalists or publishers would make.



    I know y'all been sued before but I suspect there's a couple sharpies pulling contingency libel contracts out of the boilerplate file right now...
  • Reply 13 of 309
    mj webmj web Posts: 918member
    The detective has a future in Hollywood.
  • Reply 14 of 309
    thomprthompr Posts: 1,516member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ks2problema View Post


    I know y'all been sued before but I suspect there's a couple sharpies pulling contingency libel contracts out of the boilerplate file right now...



    Libel over what we are saying HERE, in an anonymous forum, where everyone has an opinion and nobody has any facts? Are you kidding me? This is nothing more than an elementary school playground, when compared to the supposedly "sourced" info that we are responding to. You can say what you want all day long in these response forums.



    Thompson
  • Reply 15 of 309
    bertpbertp Posts: 274member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Police were alerted to investigate Brian Hogan's possession of the prototype iPhone after his roommate called Apple Security out of fear she might be considered an accomplice in the theft.



    Let me say a word for that roommate. She showed good judgement in a difficult situation.
  • Reply 16 of 309
    blursdblursd Posts: 123member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BertP View Post


    Let me say a word for that roommate. She showed good judgement in a difficult situation.



    Agreed ... it looks as if she was the only one who actually did the right thing.
  • Reply 17 of 309
    rwheadonrwheadon Posts: 19member
    I don't care about the courts, the lawyers, heck... even the law.



    I don't care if the kid lifted the phone off our apple guy or really "found" it.



    The kid did a sleezy thing in contacting gizmodo and selling them the phone.and knew it when he did it. Gizmodo was also clearly in the wrong to purchase the phone from a person they knew had no right selling the phone.



    Now that it's all unfolding before us and everyone (including me) begins brandish opinion and speculation I can disengage with my own summary.



    The kid got a hold of the new iPhone prototype and instead of giving it back to Apple he sold it to Gizmodo. Everyone in this story is old enough to know how to be accountable for their actions and regardless of moral disposition knows that they did not behave in an honorable manner.



    IMHO props in the story like Apple, iPhone, Gizmodo, Police and Lawyers (and those that attempt to be) are just peripheral to the matter.
  • Reply 18 of 309
    kolchakkolchak Posts: 1,398member
    Hey, Hogan. "Sucks for you" now, doesn't it? Karma's a bitch. Hope you got some enjoyment out of that $5000 or whatever you got. You've probably figured out by now that the amount of trouble you're in isn't worth ten times that. But, hey, maybe you'll get Jason Chen as a cell mate.
  • Reply 19 of 309
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,167member
    Now you know why Hogan Lawyer didn't want the affidavit unsealed.
  • Reply 20 of 309
    str1f3str1f3 Posts: 573member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by thompr View Post


    Gizmodo is guilty as hell. Did you miss the part where Steve Jobs himself called Jason Chen and asked for the phone back the DAY BEFORE Chen posted the pictures? Gizmodo knew exactly what they had when Jobs asked for it back. They had no business playing games and then leaking trade secrets at that point.



    Thompson



    Gizmodo is in far deeper trouble than just that. Apple stated to the police that the prototype was invaluable and would cause lost sales from the 3GS.



    Brian Lam wrote an email to Jobs stating that he knew it would cause lost sales. Not only that but, in the email, he was seemingly trying to blackmail Jobs into giving Gizmodo better access (in exchange for getting the phone back sooner) while trying to get confirmation that this was the next iPhone so they could go ahead with the story.



    This is also including that Gizmodo gave back a bag of parts of what was originally a whole iPhone, took photos, posted it on the web possibly revealing trade secrets. They even admitted they knew it was stolen in a posting on Gizmodo's website.



    Gizmodo is in very, very deep trouble.
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