Illegal images are found on a man’s iPhone screen after he was arrested, stolen iPhone recovered after a year, iPad video used in a case against a prosecutor, and more in the Apple Crime Blotter.
The latest in an occasional AppleInsider feature, looking at the world of Apple-related crime.
Man accused of having child pornography on his iPhone screen
Pennsylvania State Police in December arrested a 63-year-old man for a traffic violation, but upon looking at his phone, the police discovered child pornography on the screen. According to My Twin Tiers, a trooper noticed the image when he was handed the iPhone.
The man has been charged with one felony count of sexual abuse of children for possessing “material depicting a child under the age of 18 years engaging in a prohibited sexual act or in the simulation of such act.”
Find My iPhone helped find stolen doggy daycare van
The owner of the Dogpatch Resort, a doggy daycare in Oregon, says her iPhone helped locate her business’ stolen van and the 11 dogs that were in it at the time.
According to KOIN, business owner Sunni Liston said the van was stolen with her phone left in it, at which point her employees used Find My iPhone to ping the vehicle’s location. The van was found in a parking lot, and all of the dogs were recovered unharmed.
Stolen iPhone recovered after 11 months
A woman on the r/iPhone subreddit wrote February 9 that she was able to use Find My iPhone to get back her stolen iPhone nearly a year after the fact.
According to the post, the woman’s then-new iPhone 11 was stolen from her car in March of 2020. After she was tipped off by an email, she noticed that the stolen iPhone had pinged and was located just an hour from her home.
Local police then recovered the iPhone.
Smashed iPhones found at home of Capitol riot’s accused “bullhorn lady”
Several of the participants in the January 6 Capitol riot have been arrested or indicted based on evidence obtained from their iPhones. So it’s not a surprise that one person accused of having a role in the violent insurrection appears may have destroyed some.
According to CNN, federal prosecutors said in a government filing that a woman who was present at the riot had multiple smashed iPhones at her home, along with firearms paraphernalia and “go bags.”
The U.S. Attorney’s office disclosed the evidence as part of an appeal over whether the woman, known as “bullhorn lady,” would be released to house arrest.
She was ultimately granted that house arrest, per WFMJ. The woman faces charges of obstruction, depredation of government property, violent entry, and taking a dangerous weapon onto restricted property.
Meeting to sell iPhone in Detroit leads to shooting
An 18-year-old and a 17-year-old in Detroit scheduled a meetup on February 2 for one to sell the other an iPhone. But once they met, Detroit News reports, the buyer grabbed the phone and ran, with the victim shot after attempting to chase the criminal.
Police arrested the 17-year-old.
iPad video evidence for charges against prosecutor accused of recording sex partners
An assistant prosecutor in Wisconsin was charged with secretly recording sexual encounters with two different women, and the charges include evidence involving both an iPhone and iPad.
According to The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, police say they searched the man’s house and discovered an iPad. That device included a pair of videos of the man having sex with one of the victims and another video of the man with a third victim.
Neither victim had consented to be recorded on the iPad, per the report, although one accuser told police she agreed on some occasions to recordings of sex acts while the accused man held an iPhone.
Unlawful Apple purchases at Chicago-area Apple Store
The pandemic and subsequent closures of some Apple Stores have made reports of retail thefts rare in the last few months. But The Chicago Tribune reported in early February that a fraudulent purchase was picked up from the Apple Store at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg, Ill.
The report said that a credit card belonging to an area business called Tuf-Tite made two unauthorized online purchases totaling $1,208.90. The items were then picked up from that suburban Chicago Apple Store.
iPad, jewelry stolen from gift shop in Massachusetts
A Massachusetts woman is accused of stealing an iPad and several items of jewelry. The woman was arrested when she returned to the same store hours later.
According to The Worcester Telegram & Gazette, the woman took between $2,500 to $3,000 worth of items. She was later charged with two counts of breaking and entering during the daytime to commit a felony and larceny in a building.
Police officer played music on phone as Instagram user filmed him
In a video that went viral the first week of February, the operator of an Instagram account called mrcheckpoint_, which uses the slogan “Always Film the Police,” was doing just that to an officer in Beverly Hills. On the video, the officer produced what appeared to be an iPhone and began playing a song by the group Sublime.
It was described by the Instagram user as an attempt to introduce copyrighted music to the video and therefore trip up that social network’s algorithms. It didn’t appear to work, however, as the video remains up on Instagram.
Band’s stolen gear recovered, minus their iPad
A band in New Zealand had most of their equipment stolen from a storage facility, where it had been sitting as the band has been idle for the pandemic. While most of the band’s instruments and other equipment were discovered dumped at a local farm, the thieves appear to have kept the group’s iPad.
The Waikato Times reports The Monroes got a call from the farm owner, who discovered several boxes of the equipment dumped on his property. The farmer knew it belonged to the band due to a major local push to recover its equipment.
The items the band didn’t recover included the iPad, a laptop, and the trailer that had contained the equipment.
Claim of iCloud hack leads to sentencing of Canadian man
A Canadian man has been sentenced to five years in prison after he was convicted of obtaining nude photos of a then-underaged girl in Oregon and attempting to extort her. According to KATU, the man claimed in social media messages from 2016 to have hacked the girl’s iCloud account and threatened to expose the intimate photos unless the girl sent more such images.
After the man’s IP address was discovered, he was arrested and was charged in Canada with Accessing Child Pornography, Importing or Distributing Child Pornography, Possessing Child Pornography, and Extortion.
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