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Sometimes a story hands headline writers a gift they can't use, which is what happened with the news that a local clown wound up in possession of Steve Jobs's stolen iPad, and just used it to play music during his routine. "Steve Jobs's stolen iPad unwittingly used by local clown after burglary," is the headline the San Jose Mercury News ultimately went with for a story by Mike Rosenberg. Very straight, because the Merc is kind of a no-nonsense paper. Although one editor there said he had suggested "Some clown ended up with Steve Jobs's stolen iPad -- literally." It didn't make the cut.

Poor Kenneth Kahn, aka, Kenny the Clown, though. He's the professional clown and friend of Kariem McFarlin (pictured), the 34-year-old charged with burglarizing Jobs' Palo Alto home, who says McFarlin just gave him the iPad. He said he basically "used it like an ipod" and didn't really explore its contents. "He had no idea the device came from the fabled Jobs residence until after the friend who gave him the gadget was charged with breaking into the CEO's Palo Alto home," the Merc's Rosenberg reported. "By then, the cops had already shown up at his door and taken it away." Nor did McFarlin know the home he allegedly entered with a spare key he found, making off with computers, cell phones, jewelry, and champagne, belonged to the family of the late Apple founder. He even took Jobs' wallet and driver's license. Police tracked McFarlin down when he got online with one of Jobs' old computers and they located his IP address.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.

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