One night in early December, a guy bring a bottle of champagne and flowers appeared at Apple CEO Tim Cook’s house. He returned a month later on, getting in the residential or commercial property’s gate without approval and sounding the doorbell.
Those interactions — together with call, making what Apple explains in a legal filing as “threatening statements” — led the business to ask for a limiting order this month versus Rakesh Sharma, a 41-year-old San Francisco guy.
A California court approved Apple a short-term limiting order versus Sharma, who passes “Rocky.” He has actually been purchased to keep away from Cook’s house in Silicon Valley, in addition to the CEO’s 3 guard. The order lasts through March 3, when a hearing is set up.
In a court file, Apple security professional William Burns stated Sharma’s harassment started on Sept. 25, 2019, when he left a “disturbing” voicemail on “an Apple executive’s phone.” Sharma presumably made another disturbing call about a week later on. After that, Sharma’s habits “escalated,” Burns stated, to trying “to stalk Apple’s CEO by physically trespassing on the CEO’s personal property” on 2 different events.
Sharma went into Cook’s residential or commercial property through a closed gate without approval at around 10: 30 p.m. on Dec. 4 in an effort to provide the flowers and champagne, a filing stated. “Shortly thereafter, Mr. Sharma continued to tag the Apple executive on his Twitter account, which included sexualized and inappropriate photos of Mr. Sharma with reference to the Apple executive,” it stated.
Sharma went back to Cook’s house on Jan. 15 however left prior to the Palo Alto Police Department showed up, Burns stated.
“Mr. Sharma’s continuous and increasingly threatening conduct is causing me and other Apple employees significant emotional distress and gives me grave concern for our personal safety,” Burns said.
Apple is one of the world’s biggest companies, and Cook, CEO since 2011, is one of the world’s most powerful and recognizable tech executives. It isn’t a surprise that Cook and other Apple executives have alleged stalkers, nor that Apple would take steps to protect its employees.
Apple declined to comment. Sharma, when reached by CNET, described the interactions as a misunderstanding. He said he doesn’t have an attorney representing him in this case yet.
A video Sharma posted to Twitter in early February criticized Cook.
“Hey Tim Cook, you have serious issues at your brand,” he says. “You need to leave the Bay Area. Basically, I’m shooing you out. Shoo, Tim Cook, out of the Bay Area.”
After allegedly trespassing on Cook’s property, Sharma in February placed “two nonsensical” calls to Apple, Burns said in a filing. In one, he asked for a cash settlement because he said an “Apple employee laughed at him over the phone and hung up while Mr. Sharma was allegedly recovering in the hospital.” Sharma told Apple that his attorney is Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, according to a court filing.
Apple’s attorneys sent Sharma a cease-and-desist letter on Feb. 5, telling him to not contact Apple and its executive team. That same day, Sharma called Apple’s AppleCare tech support line and “made a number of highly disturbing and threatening comments,” the filing said.
“During the call, Mr. Sharma stated that he knows where members of Apple’s Executive Team lives and stated that ‘I don’t use ammunition but I know people who do,’ that Apple’s CEO is a criminal and that Apple tried to have Mr. Sharma killed while Mr. Sharma was in the hospital,” Burns said. He added that Sharma “made other delusional and paranoid comments related to Apple.”
A reporter from Medium’s OneZero spotted the filings earlier Thursday.
CNET’s Steven Musil and Andrew Morse contributed to this report.