No Charges for Gizmodo's Jason Chen in iPhone4 Case -- Here's What You Should Have Learned

Gizmodo's Jason Chen is in the clear now that the San Mateo County District Attorney's office has decided not to file charges against him for buying a stolen iPhone4 last year (good summary of earlier events here).

Brian Hogan and Sage Wallower, who allegedly found the phone and sold it to Gizmodo, will be charged with misappropriation of lost property and possession of stolen property.

Some practical lessons here:

1. If you find something that is not yours, give it back.
2. If you find something you know is not yours and you sell it, you are a criminal.
3. If you are a journalist, you shouldn't attempt to buy stolen property.
4. If you are a journalist and someone approaches you with stolen property, it's fine to take photos of that property and report on it, but you should encourage the thieves to give it back -- and report them to the police and owner of the property (after you do the story and get the pageviews).