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iPhone HD/iPhone 4G "finder" turned in by roommate

When Apple engineer Gray Powell's prototype iPhone HD/iPhone 4G fell from his bag in a bar, it was "found" by Brian Hogan, and -- as it turns out now -- it was Hogan's roommate, Katherine Martinson, who turned Hogan in. Here's the gist, including Hogan's obvious effort to enter into karma receivership right from the start:

“Sucks for him,” Hogan allegedly told Martinson. “He lost his phone. Shouldn’t have lost his phone.”Martinson turned Hogan in because Hogan had plugged the phone into her laptop in an attempt to get it working again after Apple remotely disabled it. She was convinced that Apple would be able to trace her Internet IP address as a result. “Therefore she contacted Apple in order to aboslive herself of criminal responsibility,” according to the affidavit.

Martinson informed Apple Hogan had found the phone, knew the Facebook profile of the person who lost it, but instead of trying to return it was offering it up to gadget blogs. (It ultimately found its way to Gizmodo).

What followed is an almost farcical attempt at destroy evidence with police hot on the trail.

Now we just need to find out how the older prototype got to Vietnam...

[Wired]

Rene Ritchie
Contributor

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

38 Comments
  • Who cares anymore,,, let it go already everyone,,,,
    We're less than a month away form the announcement of the damn thing anyway....I just hope it wont be as ugly as the damn prototype.....
  • The plot thickens...
  • I don't know why anybody cares Steve jobs knows and sees all
  • I think Apple wasn't happy with the way that the folks from Law and Order (pictured above) were handling the case so they had the show cancelled.
  • Good for the Roomate! "Sucks for him" is not an answer for others' misfortune.
  • And yet thousands of phones are lost every year, yet the police can never seem to find them. Funny, how it works out for Apple
  • Devinbriggs.com
  • @A1by, are you really saying that a lost prototype is equivalent to a lost mass manufactured device? Surely you're not, right?
    Read up on the story, the police didn't find this one either, Gizmodo posted it ALL over their website, being quite blatant with what they had.
    This would have worked out for HTC, Motorola, or any other corporation much in the same way.
  • worst roommate ever.
  • @Ken:
    I'd say first of all make a unique site design that pertains to your subject, if not, find some designer friends. If you can't do this it'll be hard to gain a following.
    Second, buy a domain name. They aren't that expensive yearly and it's really worth it for accessibility.
  • Excuse me (off topic)...but what the f*ck does "aboslive" mean??? I kinda figured it out by using context clues but what's the actual definition??
  • Don't trust your Roomate !!!!!
  • http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/absolve
  • @Will
    I think, and hope they meant absolve. Which would be close to the word alleviate in definition.
  • Jeeze I'd like to say I'd never hit a girl but...........
  • The person responsible for the lost iphone is the guy who left it. End of story.
  • Agreed Derek
  • the supposed iPhone HD looks like a PSP
  • Off topic, seeing that pic makes me sad that Law and Order was cancelled today. I assume that TiPB will now be using SVU pics now?
  • What a dumb bitch
  • Under law just because someone lost an item you can't do as you please with it and now Gizmodo and Hogan are being investigated for felonies.
    As more details come out Hogan is being painted in a different light than what Gizmodo or his lawyer gave. Some of the things like Hogan getting rid of evidence (badly) and his roommate's testimony seem quite damning. In addition Apple claims Gizmodo damaged the prototype so I wonder if they will be allowed in to the WWDC this year.
    On a side note, does anyone think that woman on the left looks like the newly appointed US Justice?
  • @Ken kinneen
    You are making my name look bad. Stop promoting theft.
    Im all for the jailbreak, but really, do you think people need help stealing apps?
  • What a stupid bitch
  • Interesting how the Apple-hating know-it-alls, who insisted this was all a plant by Apple, now suddenly say they "don't care"... or are all hiding.
    Well... we didn't care for your extremely dull, half-witted three paragraph rants, either. :roll:
  • TiPB needs to read what they type at least ONCE to check for spelling (aboslive->absolve) and grammar errors (destroy->destroying). It makes you look like hacks that don't give a you-know-what when you don't. Sheesh.
  • Snitches get stitches
  • Roommate did the smart thing. I bet everyone here would have done the same, if you knew you were up against a giant company like Apple. Hogan should have just returned the damn phone to the bar and end it right there. 5K is not worth all this. I seriously have no sympathy for that moron. And I never liked Gizmodo, either (too many damn Iphone fanboys)
  • Please beat me some more.
  • @Ken kinneen: I agree with Ken on the whole pirating thing. Pirating is the biggest argument software companies, and Apple uses to build a case against jailbreakers.
    Jailbreaking doesn't mean stealing software. In fact, most of the best benefits to jailbreaking have nothing to do with pirating software. As long as people/blogs like yourself keep promoting the spread of piracy, however, the rest of the world will continue to think the JB community is nothing but a bunch of pirates.
  • No mintoreo, not all of us would do the same thing. I for one would not have let him use my computer for it, and kept my mouth shut. I'm not defending stollen property, if I lost my phone I'd hope it would be returned, but snitches, especially someone who would call the cops over a cell phone, are the worst.
    Oh and coming to an iPhone site and complaining about fanboys is stupid.
  • @Rob
    Some people feel the need for self-validation. That's why they come to a known fanboy site and rip others. It makes them feel good. How pathetic is that? Even worse, when they rip your screenname and post some insane crap.
  • @Rob
    But that didn't happen, did it? So stop trying to tell the story as if you were in their shoes in your own made up scenario. The fact is this, the guy got her involved. And believe it or not, bigass corporations probably can discover stuff like IP addresses (if not, they could just turn to the authorities who definitely can). What do you think would have happened when they discovered that she knew about all this crap and didn't come forward? You DO realize that's a major felony, right? Regardless, Hogan's going down for his crap. Are you saying you're willing to go down with him for the sake of "not being a snitch"? I'd bet 100/100, you wouldn't. You're not in some organized crime family where such a thing would literally cost your life, so stop putting up your BS "I wouldn't snitch!" crap on me. People always point fingers at someone's decision until they're faced with the same one.. and in most cases, they'll do the very thing they're judging other people over.
    And I like reading up on apps, updates and happenings here. Minus Rene's idiotic defense over Apple/Steve Job's actions, the site has given me numerous help on stuff. Gizmodo, OTOH, is full of retards.
  • @MintOreo I love how you generalize people. I find it amazing that you know how every person would react in that situation. I need to learn how to divine that kind of info.
    You're right though. Everyone would react the same. Despite popular belief, humans are all the same. They all feel the same, think the same, and act the same. I guess that means that since she "snitched", every human would.
    @Rob Sorry man, his logic got you. You have no choice but to snitch if you're put in the same situation.
    /end sarcasm
  • Ok, he should not have plugged it into her computer, I see why she told now
  • @Keith
    You make this issue seem so much deeper than it actually is. The roommate had knowledge of said Iphone and her computer is most likely traceable by Apple or whoever else that saw a red herring attempt at an activation. Knowing and NOT reporting this information is a felony.
    And ask yourself this.. your roommate (=/= friend) tried to use YOUR computer to activate a STOLEN Iphone. Same guy tried to hide HIS computer from, presumably, the authorities. Does that not strike you as, well, I dunno, underhanded? What exactly would you have done, if you were in this situation? "Snitch" knowing that at least this way, you won't be committing a felony? Or not snitch and go down with him? Keep in mind, Apple probably already knows you were involved, so there isn't even a point to lying, either.
    It's one thing if she just snitched him out.. but it's another since he tried to use her computer, which puts her at risk (as opposed to him). I can understand loyalty and if by not snitching, you'd actually help him, I can see why people would look down at her for diming him out. However, in this case, even if she didn't snitch, his @$$ is grass.. your not snitching isn't going to help AT ALL. So, it's really pointless.
  • Can't we all just get along!!!!
  • I have read this story all over the place, and each article has their own little twist on this, and what actually happened. The media likes to twist things to manipulate us to believe in a perspective. I have no doubt apple is manipulating some of this to some degree! The only people really in the know are the people directly involved, who of course are going to tell the story in favor of themselves, let's generalize here, we are all human! :)
    for the most part, I hope the guy who left the phone in the first place gets fired, and Apples seeks a case against him for losing the proprietary property and Apple seeks damages from him, as he started this ball rolling. As for the guy who found, I feel he should be slapped with a small, but still considerable fine, he should have tried a little harder to return the phone, it was obvious his room-mate didnt have a problem getting a hold of Apple. As for the room-mate, well she was within her right not to let him use her computer, she was still under protected under "plausible deniability", and could have easily gotten off by just saying she thought it was a joke, end of story.
    In the end, i hope this ends up on the Oprah SHOW....YOU'RE GETTING A IPHONE G4, AND YOURE GETTING AN IPHONE G4.....EVERYONES GETTING AN IPHONE G4! That would be truly comical...Apple should get into soaps like "Days of Our Lives" or "General Hospital"...lol
  • I snitch.