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Lost iPhone 4 Prototype Finders Sentenced to Probation


Late yesterday, CNET reported that Brian Hogan and Sage Wallower, the two men involved in finding a lost iPhone 4 prototype in a Redwood City, California bar last year and selling it to Gizmodo, have pleaded no contest to the theft charges that had been brought against them. The two men were each sentenced to one year of probation and 40 hours of community service, and were required to pay $250 in restitution to Apple.
"We asked for some jail time," [Steve] Wagstaffe, the district attorney, said today. "The judge considered that Wallower had served in the armed forces and Hogan was enrolled in San Jose State, and neither had any criminal record, and decided that jail time wasn't required. Someone from my office called Apple's general counsel. This is a fairly routine theft case. This was a couple of youthful people who should have known better."
In a follow-up report relating an interview with Wagstaffe, CNET shares that Gizmodo was ultimately cleared of any charges related to the case because of a lack of evidence. Wagstaffe did, however, have some harsh words for the behavior of Gizmodo's staff.
Wagstaffe said, however, that his office's review of the computers seized from [Gizmodo editor Jason] Chen's home showed the correspondence between Gizmodo editors was "juvenile."

"It was obvious that they were angry with the company about not being invited to some press conference or some big Apple event. We expected to see a certain amount of professionalism--this is like 15-year-old children talking," Wagstaffe said. "There was so much animosity, and they were very critical of Apple. They talked about having Apple right where they wanted them and they were really going to show them."
The district attorney's office had specifically looked for evidence of Gizmodo's participation in theft leading to possession of stolen property, as well as potential extortion, but did not find sufficient evidence to support either charge.

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Posted: 36 months ago
This is ridiculous. Jail time? Do we know the FACTS of all this? Has it been PROVEN in court that these men acquired the prototype through illegal means? For heavens sake, Apple "lost" a 2nd prototype at a bar...so I think the quick answer that they (or someone they dealt with) "stole" the prototype is horribly indefensible. I cant believe the DA would suggest jail time for this, in light of the truly horrible offenses that people commit daily without equal punishment.

A SWAT raid on the man's house, and now this? I would sue the hell out of Apple and the police force for this disgusting amount of harassment. These men now have criminal records.
Rating: 10 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

This is ridiculous. Jail time? Do we know the FACTS of all this? Has it been PROVEN in court that these men acquired the prototype through illegal means? For heavens sake, Apple "lost" a 2nd prototype at a bar...so I think the quick answer that they (or someone they dealt with) "stole" the prototype is horribly indefensible. I cant believe the DA would suggest jail time for this, in light of the truly horrible offenses that people commit daily without equal punishment.

A SWAT raid on the man's house, and now this? I would sue the hell out of Apple and the police force for this disgusting amount of harassment. These men now have criminal records.

Junk thought like this is a plague in our society.

As many have said in this thread, what they did was criminal, and no matter how large or small, you will get punished if caught and found guilty.

A few months ago I got fined and ticketed for speeding. I was going 70mph in a 55mph zone.

Is this a dangerous speed? No, conditions were ideal.

Was I breaking Pennsylvania's road laws? Yes.

Did I know that I could potentially be fined and possibly have points applied to my license for doing this? Of course.

Did I bitch about it? Of course.

Did I try to peg the blame on someone else or blame our supposedly backwards and corrupt criminal justice system and did my friends suggest I "sue the hell out of" the HPD for the trauma of flashing lights in my eyes? Of course not, because I use the gray lump of matter in my head known as my brain.
Rating: 6 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
Gizmodo kinda reads like a bunch of 15 year olds, so I'm not really that surprised. I mean, I still go there every day, but I'm started to ask myself 'why?'
Rating: 5 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
Man that Jason Chen is a freaky looking guy. His mouth looks like an 4$$Hole!
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

If I ever find a prototype iPhone, I sure as hell won't be getting near it.

There's nothing wrong with finding lost property.

The problem is when you know who it belongs to and you don't give it back to them yet use it for your own personal reasons. That's illegal in the State of California. It's not "finders keepers, losers weepers" here.

Whether or not it's a prototype device or an actual production unit is essentially irrelevant.

I've found wallets, ID cards, etc. The easiest thing to do is to hand it to the nearest police officer ("you deal with it") and not try to figure out how to get it back to the original owner.

Gizmodo deserves a black eye for this. Both Chen and Lam were indeed juvenile pricks about the whole episode (Lam sheepishly admitted it after Steve's death). Nick Denton continues to be one of the most insufferable bastards in all of online media. A pox on their houses.

Gizmodo will never ever be invited to another Apple media event; Chen guaranteed that. He screwed himself as well as Gawker Media. I completely applaud the latter consequence.
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
If I ever find a prototype iPhone, I sure as hell won't be getting near it.
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
honestly, no surprises here. I used to read Gizmodo daily. And over time the way they jump to conclusions and keep writing judgmental skiddish articles they don't even bother spell-checking, really got me to stop reading Gizmodo altogether. I wouldn't even go out to lunch with any of their editors, because most of them seem like total jerks from the way they write. Decline of journalism is at hand.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

honestly, no surprises here. I used to read Gizmodo daily. And over time the way they jump to conclusions and keep writing judgmental skiddish articles they don't even bother spell-checking, really got me to stop reading Gizmodo altogether. I wouldn't even go out to lunch with any of their editors, because most of them seem like total jerks from the way they write. Decline of journalism is at hand.


I lost all respect for Gizmodo after that "TV-B-Gone" prank they pulled at CES. Completely and utterly unprofessional behaviour. I'm glad they are reaping what they sow.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

Sentence was too harsh. Just the cost to defend was more than adequate punishment.

Asking for jail time was simply over the top.

Our legal system at its finest. More tax dollars now being spent to support probation.

Stupid.


Let it slide, right? or better just let them pay whatever it would have cost to defend and let them continue doing stuff like this?

Now they have a record and if they attempt anything like this in that year they will be someones sweethearts. I think all is fair here.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
There's that ugly mug again
Rating: 1 Votes

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