By Jon Passantino, CNN
Police in Southern California are looking to speak with Elon Musk and his security team over an alleged assault last week that Musk claimed involved a “crazy stalker” and led to the suspension of a private jet-tracking account on Twitter as well as several prominent journalists.
Musk has pointed to the incident as the reason for Twitter’s abrupt policy change on posting user location information, alleging that the @ElonJet account and the journalists had shared his “exact real-time” location. While the @ElonJet account showed Musk’s private jet landed on Dec. 12 in Los Angeles, the incident occurred roughly 24 hours later and 25 miles away from the airport, according to police.
In a statement Tuesday, police in South Pasadena, California, offered a different version of the incident than Musk first claimed, stating that police responded to a report of an assault with a deadly weapon just before 10 p.m. on Dec. 13. When an officer arrived, they found a 29-year-old Connecticut man, whom police described as a victim.
The man, who was not identified, said he had just exited the 110 Freeway in his vehicle when he stopped to use his phone in a parking lot. While he was parked, he told police, another car pulled in front of him and blocked his path. The driver of the second vehicle approached the man and accused him of following him on the freeway. When the suspect later left the parking lot, he struck the man with his car, police said.
“At no time during the incident did the victim identify the suspect or indicate the altercation was anything more than coincidental,” police said.
Two days after the incident, on Dec. 15, police said they “learned the suspect involved in this case is believed to be a member of Elon Musk’s security team. Detectives do not believe Mr. Musk was present during the confrontation.” Police said detectives are reviewing evidence and video footage in the incident and “efforts to contact Mr. Musk and his security team for statements are underway.”
The statement comes after Musk suspended CNN’s Donie O’Sullivan, and several other journalists, falsely accusing them of sharing the billionaire’s live location. O’Sullivan and other reporters had recently written about the Twitter account that tracked Musk’s private plane.
“They posted my exact real-time location, basically assassination coordinates, in (obvious) direct violation of Twitter terms of service,” Musk claimed in a tweet Thursday night.
Musk said that he took the action after a “crazy stalker” followed a car carrying his son in Los Angeles on Dec. 13. “Last night, car carrying lil X in LA was followed by crazy stalker (thinking it was me), who later blocked car from moving & climbed onto hood,” he said in a tweet on Dec. 14. Musk later posted a video of a man in a car along with the car’s license plate, and asked “Anyone recognize this person or car?”
Earlier this week, The Washington Post spoke to a man who claimed to be the person seen in the video posted by Musk. The man told the paper he was in the area at the time working for Uber Eats and made bizarre claims about Musk and the mother of two of Musk’s children.
CNN has reached out to the man for comment.
Asked for comment by O’Sullivan on the incident Tuesday, Musk told CNN in an email: “Donor O’Sulivan [sic] is a liar.”
– CNN’s Stella Chan contributed to this report.
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