Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

May 6, 2010 -

MSNBC reports that the Associated Press and other news organizations have asked a judge to unseal the search warrant affidavit used to raid the home of Gizmodo.com editor Jason Chen. The warrant used for the raid was already made public and indicated that it was related to a "suspected felony." No charges have been filed and the confiscated material - computers, hard drives, digital cameras, cell phones, financial documents, etc. - remains in the hands of law enforcement.

Steve Wagstaffe, spokesman for the San Mateo County district attorney's office, said that the confiscated items "are not being examined while prosecutors consider arguments that the search was illegal." Meanhwile Chen's attorney, Thomas Burke of Davis Wright Tremaine in San Francisco, said in a recent interview that the search warrant should have never been issued because California law protects journalists from such searches without a special hearing.

The legality of the raid is one of many unanswered questions media outlets are asking - more specifically, reasons for the search warrant being more compelling than the legal protections given to journalists under California law. Curiously, Court documents revealing legal reasons for a particular search are usually made public within 10 days, but the affidavit supporting this raid remains sealed.

The "suspected felony" relates to an iPhone prototype phone that was sold to Gawker Media's Gizmodo for $5,000 after a hapless Apple engineer left it in a Silicon Valley bar and later found by another bar patron.

Source: MSNBC

Posted in

Comments

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

What "legal protection" under Californian law? Since when does California have a law protecting someone who buys stolen property?

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

Unless a reporter is convicted of a crime, a public hearing has to be held to determine if a search warrant can be issued to investigate a reporter, if the warrant is tied to something involving a story he or she is working on.  No such hearing was held in this particular case.

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

Perhaps you shouldn't be so quick to assume that the "reporter" in this case is actually a reporter as was intended to be protected by California's shield law. That ain't entirely clear to me. Granted, I haven't read much Gizmodo, but if they're anything like GamePolitics has become since the departure of Dennis McCauley, a claim to being a legitimate "journalist" could well be specious. Just because you wait on legitimate journals to publish news stories and then republish those stories on a blog doesn't necessarily make you a journalist worthy of protection. It more clearly makes you a plagiarist, but that it makes you a journalist is less clear. 

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

"iPhoneGate"? Ok, it's time to retire that little meme.

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

Thomas Burke of Davis Wright Tremaine in San Francisco, said in a recent interview that the search warrant should have never been issued because California law protects journalists from such searches without a special hearing.

I love how they always creatively leave off the part about how the journalist shield laws don't apply if it's suspected the journalist has committed a felony.

Of course, I think they're still trying to determine if he committed a felony, but that's another story.

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

Actually, they're inherently linked.  If they don't have enough evidence that he committed a felony, then the hearing should have commenced.  You know, "innocent until proven guilty" and all.

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

This is America, it's Guilty until proven innocent.  And even then you're still considered guilty most of the time.  Of course this does not apply to the wealthy.

---

I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

Hmmmm... I suppose it all boils down to whether person buying the goods knew or suspected they were stolen, and does 'finding it in a bar' surmount to 'theft' (theoretically, yes, when you consider the sum it was sold on for, the person who found it obviously had some idea of its value). From that point, I can almost see the reason behind the laws' reasoning, but then, without knowing how much evidence the Police had with regards to what was going on, I really couldn't guess at the legality of a search warrant, from what I understand, there's needs to be some pretty compelling evidence to make a search warrantable.

 

Re: Media Seeks Details of 'iPhoneGate' Warrant

From what I've read elsewhere, the guy who 'found' it at the bar is facing criminal charges himself, as Cali has a law stating if you find something, reasonable attempts to return to owner must be made or else it will be considered theft. In the article I read, all he did was ask various patrons of the bar if it was theirs. He didn't even leave contact information with the bar, let alone letting the bar know he had it, incase the owner came looking for it.


 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Poll

Will Target Australia sell the next GTA game upon its release?:

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
Andrew EisenAnd I still don't see how articles like Polygon's "An awful week to care about video games" can be construed as an attack.07/31/2015 - 4:25pm
Andrew Eisen18 total? I've seen several lists and the total has never been above 14. The most popular collection seems to be 9 on Aug. 28 then three more on Aug. 29, Sep. 2 and Sep. 3.07/31/2015 - 4:24pm
Infophile@Goth_Skunk: Your distaste for TMS is noted and given exactly the respect it deserves. The fact that you don't like a site doesn't mean they can't be right. In the linked article, they are.07/31/2015 - 4:06pm
Goth_SkunkAnd the worst volleys are the ones being fired by the kind of people who should be standing up and saying 'Hey! This isn't cool! Stop that!'07/31/2015 - 4:05pm
Goth_SkunkNow let's come full circle: One such confrontationally titled article is easy to dismiss. Within a day, nine similarly titled articles are written. Within 4 more days, nine more articles are written. This can't be ignored. This is a blatant attack.07/31/2015 - 4:04pm
Andrew EisenAnd that's totally fine. I too often skip articles and videos based solely on an unappealing title.07/31/2015 - 3:56pm
Goth_SkunkPersonally, I would not waste time reading an article with such a blatantly confrontational title.07/31/2015 - 3:52pm
Andrew EisenGoth - Depends on how the article was written and what it actually said.07/31/2015 - 3:49pm
Goth_SkunkThis is like going fishing and castign a HUGE net that captures tuna, dolphins, sharks, cod, and salmon when all you really want to capture are clownfish.07/31/2015 - 3:48pm
Andrew EisenPerm - If the specific make and model are made clear, I have no problem with the article saving space by refering to them as "these cars" or whatever.07/31/2015 - 3:47pm
Goth_Skunk... Hasbro's widening horizons..." would it not make sense that some would object there is no distinction being made between a reactionary brony and a stable-minded brony?07/31/2015 - 3:47pm
Big PermCars are being recalled because they explode. Editors Note at the end: Not all cars, only this specific make and model07/31/2015 - 3:46pm
Andrew EisenI still feel it was clear that they were admonishing a particular and very specific type of gamer. It's why I had no problem with any of the articles (especially since about half of them weren't really about "gamers" anyway).07/31/2015 - 3:45pm
Goth_Skunk@Andrew: If a columnist had written a "Bronies Are Dead" article, but in the article stated: "Note: I'm not talking about every guy who watches MLP or who self-identifies as a brony, just the type of reactionary holdouts that feel so threatened by..."07/31/2015 - 3:45pm
benohawkYou would if you didn't care.07/31/2015 - 3:43pm
Big PermIf you're referring to a certain subset of gamers, you wouldn't refer to that subset under the umbrella term of gamer. Or at least I wouldn't, because I think that's ridiculous.07/31/2015 - 3:42pm
benohawkI buy it, I think they honestly have no problem with most gamers. But it was more important to get links and page views, so gamers were a whipping boy for the media again.07/31/2015 - 3:41pm
Big PermI won't defend people going too far with harassment or email campaigns, but I also won't say they're in the wrong for feeling hostility towards their identity.07/31/2015 - 3:41pm
Andrew EisenI do. I felt the articles made it very clear who specifically the authors were referring to.07/31/2015 - 3:41pm
Big PermIt's an attack on an identity. I don't buy "but we're not talking about you, we swear" for a moment.07/31/2015 - 3:40pm
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician