Apple’s PR patrol is going to be working overtime this weekend as reports leak out about a breach of the law by some of its security officials.
Earlier this week, word got out that in July an Apple employee had misplaced (read: lost) an iPhone 5 prototype at a San Francisco restaurant and bar, Cava 22. According to the story, which was first filed by CNET, Apple representatives called the San Francisco police department claiming that a “priceless” device had gone missing, and that it was imperative they find it. Using built-in GPS technology, they tracked the device to a house lived in by a man in his mid-twenties. He let them search the residence and found nothing, but the story raised a lot of questions, since it was unknown whether the missing phone, which is purportedly an iPhone 5 prototype, was ever found.
Today, new information is coming out revealing that in fact the San Francisco Police Department was never contacted, and a report never filed at all. Indeed, the “police” that arrived at the young man’s house, whose name is Sergio Calderon, were allowed to search the premises including his car and his computer. Unfortunately these individuals were outed as Apple security personnel. Because the six employees who entered the house did not divulge that they were not in fact policemen (though it is presumed they were not wearing police uniforms) they are being accused of impersonation, which is a criminal offense in California.
One of the employees, Anthony Colon, offered Calderon $300 to return the device, but he denies having any involvement in the theft. As the investigation is ongoing, answers may not be revealed for some time, but if the allegations are true this may be a dark cloud over a very bright year for Apple.
Update: This saga is getting out of hand now. Apparently now the San Francisco Police were part of the investigation. SW Weekly is now reporting that “The bizarre saga involving a lost prototype of the iPhone 5 has taken another interesting turn. Contradicting past statements that no records exist of police involvement in the search for the lost prototype, San Francisco Police Department spokesman Lt. Troy Dangerfield now tells SF Weekly that “three or four” SFPD officers accompanied two Apple security officials in an unusual search of a Bernal Heights man’s home.”