EBay’s Former PR Chief Is ‘Executive 2’ in Cyberstalking Indictment

EBay Inc.’s former communications chief is “Executive 2” in a federal indictment accusing company employees of cyberstalking a Massachusetts couple, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Steven Wymer, who has not been charged with a crime, was EBay’s public-relations chief for about nine months in 2019, when six EBay employees allegedly harassed the proprietors of an e-commerce newsletter that wrote articles about the company. Bloomberg reported Monday that “Executive 1” is former chief executive officer Devin Wenig, who is also referred to in the indictment but not charged with anything.

Wymer allegedly sent a text to Wenig in April of last year saying, “We are going to crush this lady” after the newsletter published a story about Wenig’s compensation, according to the indictment.

Those texts preceded an alleged cyberstalking campaign that included sending the couple live cockroaches, a funeral wreath, a bloody pig Halloween mask and a book on surviving the death of a spouse. Federal prosecutors claim former EBay employees James Baugh and David Harville led the elaborate campaign. Four other former EBay employees were also charged.

Wymer did not respond to requests for comment sent to him through LinkedIn and Twitter. Before EBay, he held communications posts at social media platform Nextdoor.com Inc. and digital video recorder maker Tivo Inc. Before joining the tech industry, he worked in press relations roles for U.S. senators in Nebraska and Colorado and briefly worked with the State Department managing relations with several African nations, according to his LinkedIn profile.

The charges come less than a year after Wenig stepped down as EBay’s CEO amid pressure from activist investors to break up the company. EBay said in a statement that it “terminated all involved employees, including the company’s former chief communications officer, in September 2019.” Wymer held the title and left EBay at that time.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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