The timing and location of the confrontation call into question Musk’s claim that the account posted real-time “conspiracy coordinates” that threatened his family and led to the confrontation. Police have said little about the incident, but say they have found no connection between the confrontation and the jet tracking account.
Last week’s incident prompted a major rewrite of Twitter’s rules suspension of accounts of half a dozen journalists, was condemned by free speech advocates. It also highlights how Musk’s personal concerns may affect his management of the social media platform used by hundreds of millions of people around the world.
As the sole owner of Twitter, Musk can dictate policies as he pleases. Musk has dismissed Twitter’s board of directors, which other companies could have influenced the company’s response to the incident, as well as its long-standing “trust and safety” committee, which advises the social media platform on its policies. No executive at Twitter can balance Musk’s instructions.
South Pasadena police were called to the gas station on Tuesday in the Los Angeles suburb of South Pasadena, according to the business manager, but no arrests were made. South Pasadena police did not respond to requests for comment.
The Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement Thursday that its Threat Management Unit had been in contact with Musk’s representatives and security team, but that no crime report had been filed. Police did not respond to requests for an update Sunday.
Using a video of the incident that Musk shared on Twitter, The Washington Post hired the owner of the car involved in the incident, and then the driver in the video, through the ride-sharing service Turo.
The renter of the car, Brandon Collado, confirmed to The Post that he was the person shown in the video. He also provided The Post with videos taken by Musk’s bodyguard that match the video Musk shared on Twitter.
In conversations with The Post, Collado admitted that he has a crush on Musk and the musician known as Grimes, whose real name is Claire Elise Boucher, the mother of Musk’s two children. Boucher lives in a house near a gas station.
Collado, who says he is an Uber Eats driver, also made several outlandish and unsupported claims in his communications with The Post, including that he believes Boucher sent him coded messages through Instagram posts; Musk is tracking his location in real time; and said it could control Uber Eats to prevent Musk from taking delivery orders. He said he was in Boucher’s neighborhood to work for Uber Eats.
Musk did not respond to The Post’s email and tweet requests to discuss the incident. Boucher did not respond to requests for comment.
Because of the concentration of high-profile figures, stalking is a widespread problem in Los Angeles. After 21-year-old actress Rebecca Schaeffer was shot to death in the driveway of her Los Angeles home in 1989 by an obsessive fan, the city took several measures to protect the targets of stalking, such as restrictions on public access to address information. California driving records and a special police unit focused on the problem.
But in 2015, it was actress and singer Selena Gomez He was forced to move out of his $4.5 million home according to the relentless pursuer. Recently, actress Sandra Bullock talked about trauma and PTSD she lived in 2014 after a stalker broke into her home. A man accused of stalking actress Halle Berry in 2012 was sentenced to more than one year of imprisonment.
Boucher has also become a target of persecution. In 2018, an arrest warrant was issued against Raymond Barrajas after a man, Raymond Barrajas, showed up at his home and said he believed he was secretly communicating with him through his music.
Marc Madero, a Los Angeles police detective with the unit that investigates high-profile stalking cases, told The Post that the unit was investigating a man accused of stalking Boucher. Madero said that after the confrontation at the gas station, Musk’s security team alerted the police, who began investigating whether the man in the video was the same stalker. He said that the department has not made a decision yet and continues the investigation.
Madero said the man’s video showed him making an effort to wear gloves and partially cover his face to conceal his identity. But he said his unit has no evidence the man police are investigating used the jet tracking account. He noted that stalkers typically use “open source searches of the targeted person,” adding, “Nothing would surprise me.”
Musk said in a tweet Thursday that reporters were “aware of a violent stalker and still locating my family in real time.” He did not say which journalists he cited or provided evidence. The Post was unaware of the incident until Musk tweeted about it. A search of the Internet found no news about the stalker. A Bellingcat investigative journalist team volunteer used the video sent by Musk locate the event to the gas station.
Musk’s plane landed in Los Angeles last Monday, December. After the Oct. 12 flight from Oakland, the @ElonJet account reported, citing flight data known as ADS-B data, which is legally and routinely collected by aviation enthusiasts and posted on public websites such as the ADS-B Exchange.
Musk had been in San Francisco the night before booed on stage On Dave Chappelle’s comedy show. Three days ago, he sent another post Image of his 2-year-old son from San Francisco, X Æ A-XiiMusk calls it “X.”
The incident took place on December 1 at a gas station. 13, about 15 minutes before the station closed, according to manager Daniel Santiago, who was working that night. Santiago said he was surprised when the car Collado was driving pulled into the Arco station and into the space next to Santiago’s car, which is not normal for a customer to park.
The incident was caught on the gas station’s security camera, and the footage was turned over to South Pasadena police Thursday, he said.
According to a video of the incident released by Musk, a member of Musk’s security team confronted Collado, who was sitting in a car wearing gloves and a hood. “Yes, absolutely sure. Got it,” a member of Musk’s security team can be heard saying in the video.
It is not known what happened between the two men before they reached the gas station. In the videos shared with The Post, there is no indication that Musk’s children were there.
Collado claimed she was making an Uber Eats delivery and visiting a friend when she entered the gas station, and said Musk’s security guard confronted her without reason. Collado said he believed Musk was tracking his location in real time.
Two videos of Collado’s altercation, shared with The Post, show him getting out of his rental car and standing in front of a Toyota driven by Musk’s security guard.
Shortly after the incident, South Pasadena police officers arrived at the gas station, questioned Collado and told him they would file a report, Collado said.
On Saturday, Collado tweeted at Musk: “I’m the guy in this video … You have an affair with me and have been stalking me and my family for over a year.” Collado said he has not been in contact with police since Tuesday night.
After the incident at the gas station, Twitter changed its rules to prohibit links to other websites that display all “live location information,” including “travel routes, actual physical location, or other identifying information that reveals a person’s location.” this information is publicly available.”
It also suspended the accounts of @ElonJet, its operator Jack Sweeney, and dozens of other jet trackers that track the public actions of sports teams, political figures and Russian oligarchs.
Twitter also suspended reporters from The Post, New York Times, CNN and other news organizations covering the @ElonJet shutdown. Two former employees in contact with Twitter employees told The Post that the suspensions were once cited as “Elon’s direction.”
Musk’s representatives previously asked the Federal Aviation Administration to limit the sharing of certain flight records using a program known as Limiting Aircraft Data. But such requests do not prevent the transmission of ADS-B data, which comes from unencrypted signals broadcast from aircraft and can be received from the ground by anyone with the necessary equipment.
On Sunday, Musk released videos showing him participating in a World Cup game in Qatar. When some at the booths shared photos showing Musk in attendance, Twitter users pointed out that the details could be classified as real-time location information, which Musk labeled “conspiracy coordinates” and was no longer allowed.
Alice Crites contributed to this report.
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