After a San Diego man’s iPhone was stolen from him at a reggae a couple of weeks ago, he used the device’s insanely useful “Find My iPhone” feature to track down its precise location and keep tabs on it.
The app eventually led 26-year-old Kenneth Schmidgall and his roommate Greg Torkelson, a freelance news photographer, to a guy riding his bicycle near Torrey Pines State Beach.
“I saw the gentleman on the bike and we followed it and kept tracking it and every time it would stop, the guy on the bike would stop,” Schmidgall told KGTV-TV.
The alleged thief managed to get away at least three times before he was cornered, and that’s when he started to fight Schmidgall right there on the beach, which was recorded by Torkelson with his video camera.
“He said, ‘Do you want your cellphone?’ and pulled it out of the pocket like he was going to throw it in the ocean,” recalled Schmidgall, who also reportedly pepper-sprayed the guy in the face, but even that didn’t slow him down, Schmidgall said. “He kept going even after he was sprayed.”
The fight went on until an off-duty cop who was walking by saw what was going on, and detained the alleged thief until police arrived to take him into custody.
Alas, Schmidgall was reunited with his beloved iPhone, and it only took a little investigating (and a few blows to the face). “I got a cut on the lip and a few scratches, but it wasn’t a technical punch. He just shoved his hand in my face,” Schmidgall said.
“I wasn’t looking for a confrontation. I just wanted the phone back,” Schmidgall told The Huffington Post later in an interview.
But was it all worth it? Most people would say “hell no!” — especially considering the iPhone wasn’t even the latest model — but Schmidgall seems to think so.
“It’s not the phone that’s so much important,” he said. “It’s that people get away with this kind of stuff all the time with cellphones being stolen.”
He added, “I do think I taught him his lesson. I really don’t think people should be going out and getting in fights with people because of their cellphones but there comes a point when you have to stand up for yourself and say, ‘This is my stuff, and I’m not going to let people get away with taking it.'”
Check out the video report from KCTV-TV below:
And here’s the complete video of the entire 18-minute ordeal:
Kids, don’t try this at home.