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Matt Harrigan, the CEO of San Diego-based network security startup PacketSled, resigned yesterday after a flurry of comments he made on Facebook went viral over the weekend, prompting the company to place him on administrative leave and to report his comments to the Secret Service. Harrigan’s comments weren’t the usual sort of executive meltdown—they amounted to a declaration that Harrigan was going to assassinate President-elect Donald Trump.
In a Facebook thread about last week’s presidential election, Matt Harrigan wrote, “I’m going to kill the President Elect.”
“Bring it secret service,” he wrote.
While those may have been rage posts stemming from the election last week, Harrigan went on to describe how he was going to buy a sniper rifle and hunt down Trump when he moved into the White House. “Getting a sniper rifle and perching myself where it counts,” he wrote in one of a series of comments on a thread about the election. “Find a bedroom in the whitehouse [sic] that suits you motherfucker.
I’ll find you.”
The comments went viral in screenshots, being posted first on Reddit’s The_Donald subreddit. On Sunday, Harrigan apologized on his company’s blog for the comments, saying that his rant “was intended to be a joke, in the context of a larger conversation, and only privately shared as such.”
But the apology was taken down yesterday by PacketSled and replaced by a post from a company spokesperson that read:
PacketSled takes recent comments made by our CEO seriously. Once we were made aware of these comments, we immediately reported this information to the secret service and will cooperate fully with any inquiries.
These comments do not reflect the views or opinions of PacketSled, its employees, investors, or partners. Our CEO has been placed on administrative leave.
That notice was followed up today with an announcement that PacketSled’s board of directors had accepted Harrigan’s resignation “effective immediately.” The company’s CTO, Fred Wilmot, will serve as interim CEO until a replacement is found. “We want to be very clear,” the spokesperson wrote, “PacketSled does not condone the comments made by Mr. Harrigan, which do not reflect the views or opinions of the company, its employees, investors, or partners.”