Details of Lost Next-Generation iPhone Saga Revealed in Search Warrant Affidavit

164905 aff

Following on earlier news that a California court would be releasing documents related to a search warrant for the lost next-generation iPhone that ended up in the hands of Gizmodo, CNET has now posted the full documents released by the court. The documents indicate that Gizmodo's Jason Chen was considered in the requests to be a suspect in three felonies, including purchase or receipt of stolen property, theft of trade secrets, and malicious damage to another person's property (the prototype iPhone) valued at over $400.

The documents also include testimony that Brian Hogan, the finder of the iPhone, had received $8,500 from Gizmodo for the device, with an additional bonus payment to be made if Apple releases the expected device this summer.

The affidavit from Detective Matthew Broad outlines a series of events, including a discussion with Apple executives which revealed that Hogan's roommate had contacted Apple after Hogan connected the iPhone to her computer, fearing that the lost or stolen device would be traced back to her. Hogan's roommate cooperated fully with authorities and assisted them when Hogan and an acquaintance removed several pieces of evidence from his apartment. The evidence, which included a desktop computer, USB flash drive and memory card, and stickers from the iPhone prototype, were found in a church, under a bush, and in a gas station parking lot.

Hogan's roommate relates a story very similar to that previously related by Hogan to Gizmodo, suggesting that another bar patron had picked up the iPhone and given it to him thinking it was his. It is unclear exactly how Apple engineer Gray Powell lost the iPhone, although he noted that the last thing he remembered was placing it in a bag he had brought with him to the bar. The bag was later knocked over, and it is possible that the phone fell out at that time.

Hogan's roommate also noted that she and other attempted to talk him out of selling the prototype iPhone by pointing to the effect it could have on Powell's career, but he was unswayed. Hogan reportedly said, "Sucks for him. He lost his phone. Shouldn't have lost his phone."

The documents also include an email from Gizmodo editor Brian Lam to Apple CEO Steve Jobs in which he offered an explanation for his publication's actions and expressed disappointment that Gizmodo had been receiving less attention from Apple than other media outlets recently.

The thing is, Apple PR has been cold to us lately. It affected my ability to do my job right at iPad launch. So we had to go outside and find our stories like this one, very aggressively.

Apple also documented damage to the prototype iPhone upon its return, noting that a ribbon cable had been broken, a screw had been inserted incorrectly causing an electrical short, snaps for the back plate had been broken, and several screws had been stripped.

Overall, the investigation remains ongoing and neither Chen nor Hogan has been charged in relation to the case. The entire affidavit is fascinating to read and is available in its entirety (PDF), via Wired.

Top Stories

iOS 14 on iPhone feature emergency

Apple Releases iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1 With Fix for Touch ID Apple Watch Bug

Monday July 26, 2021 9:48 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1, minor bug fix updates that come just a week after the release of iOS 14.7, software that introduced new Apple Card features and support for the MagSafe Battery Pack. The iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the new software, go to...
iPad mini pro feature 2

iPad Mini 6 to Feature 8.3-Inch Display With No Home Button and Narrower Bezels

Monday July 26, 2021 12:26 pm PDT by
The sixth-generation iPad mini that's in the works will have an 8.3-inch display, according to display analyst Ross Young. That will be larger than the current 7.9-inch display, with the larger size due to the removal of the Home button and a narrower bezel design. Rumors about the iPad mini 6 have been picking up in recent weeks ahead of its prospective launch this fall. Apple analyst...
iphone 12 pro gold

Report: iPhone 14 Pro Models to Feature Tough Titanium Alloy Chassis

Monday July 26, 2021 1:12 am PDT by
Next year's "iPhone 14" series is expected to feature high-end models with a new titanium alloy chassis design, claims a new investors report by JP Morgan Chase. According to the report, the use of titanium alloy will be one of the biggest changes to the case design in the 2022 iPhone series, and Foxconn will be the exclusive manufacturer of the titanium frames for the high-end models....
nothing ear 1 buds 1

Nothing 'Ear (1)' True Wireless Earbuds Launch to Take on AirPods Pro With ANC and Unusual Design for $99

Tuesday July 27, 2021 7:57 am PDT by
Nothing, a new brand from OnePlus founder Carl Pei, has today officially launched the "Ear (1)" true wireless earbuds after months of anticipation around the company's AirPods Pro rival. The Ear (1) features an in-ear design, Active Noise Cancelation, Bluetooth 5.2, IPX4 water resistance, and a charging case with Qi-compatible wireless charging and a USB-C port. Fast pairing is supported on...
apple mac business page

Apple Shares 11 Reasons Why Business Users Should Choose Macs

Monday July 26, 2021 11:35 am PDT by
Apple today updated its Apple at Work website with a new section dedicated to the Mac, which offers up 11 reasons why "Mac means business." On the webpage, Apple highlights the M1 chip as the number one reason why business users should choose a Mac, offering up an M1 overview [PDF] that explains the benefits of the M1 chip. The information isn't new, but it does provide a look at all of...
imac with accessories

Larger Redesigned High-End iMac Rumored to Launch Next Year

Monday July 26, 2021 3:45 am PDT by
Apple's larger redesigned iMac will arrive sometime in 2022 rather than later this year, according to the leaker known as "Dylandkt." On Twitter, Dylandkt claimed that Apple's "high end iMac" is not expected to release in the fourth quarter of 2021 alongside Apple's "M1X Macs" – a reference to Apple's redesigned MacBook Pro models – because "Apple simply does not want their devices to...
General iOS 14

iOS 14.7.1 and macOS Big Sur 11.5.1 Patch Security Vulnerability That May Have Been Actively Exploited

Monday July 26, 2021 11:55 am PDT by
Apple today released unexpected iOS 14.7.1 and iPadOS 14.7.1 updates to the public, and according to a newly released support document, the software addresses a serious security vulnerability that may have been exploited in the wild. Apple says that an application may have been able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges due to a memory corruption issue. "Apple is aware of a report ...
apple bitcoin hack

Is Apple Really Buying Bitcoin?

Monday July 26, 2021 3:07 am PDT by
A large number of websites and posts on social media are stoking rumors that Apple has purchased $2.5 billion worth of bitcoin in the company's first move into cryptocurrency, but is there any validity to the claims? Many people are citing the fact that Apple was looking for a Business Development Manager with experience in alternative payments, including cryptocurrency, earlier this year as ...
tesla red orange bg feature

Tesla CEO Elon Musk Takes Shots at Apple During Earnings Call

Monday July 26, 2021 4:53 pm PDT by
During a Tesla earnings call that took place today, Tesla CEO Elon Musk spent time sniping at Apple, reports CNBC. Musk criticized Apple's "walled garden" and made comments on the company's cobalt use. In a discussion about plans to allow Tesla competitors to use the Tesla electric vehicle charger network, Musk said that Tesla does not want to create a walled garden to "bludgeon" Tesla...
FaceID iMac REREREREMIX

Gurman: Face ID on the Mac Coming Within a 'Couple of Years'

Sunday July 25, 2021 7:09 am PDT by
Apple plans to bring Face ID to the Mac within the next "couple of years," respected Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman said today in the latest edition of his Power On newsletter. In the newsletter, Gurman says that he believes Apple's ultimate goal is to shift all of its products to Face ID, including the lower-end iPhones such as the iPhone SE and the iPad Air, which feature Touch ID....