This evening Gurbaksh Chahal responded to critics who called for him to step down as CEO of RadiumOne after evading 45 felony charges for domestic violence. On Twitter, Chahal asked if "the Internet" was "stupid," adding, "Grow up people."
Security footage from Chahal's San Francisco penthouse allegedly caught the millionaire ad-tech executive hitting and kicking his girlfriend 117 times in half an hour. But Chahal's lawyer James Lassart, who is currently representing alleged arms dealer/state senator Leland Yee, got the video thrown out. Once the evidence was gone, Chahal emerged from dozens of felony charges without a mark by pleading guilty to two misdemeanors for domestic violence and battery. No jail time and what he claims was only a "$500 fine."
The reason fellow tech CEOs and investors are calling for Chahal to step down can be found in the felony complaint (embedded below via Business Insider). Jason Calacanis and others have offered to donate $31,00 to a domestic violence charity if someone brings forward the footage and air it on his podcast. But the complaint itself is sickening.
Count after count alleges Chahal kicked the victim repeatedly in the head, over and over. He allegedly dragged her from the bed to the floor, obstructed her breathing with his hand, threatened to kill her, repeatedly struck her lower body, and "hit her in the head area while holding his other hand over her mouth." It is excruciatingly detailed in its claims.
But on Twitter, Chahal characterized this travesty of justice as a "political witch hunt." He said he "got cornered" into accepting the plea. The entire case, he implies, is a result of his "alleged high-profile status." It's not clear why Chahal, who sold his previous company to Yahoo for $300 million, qualified his status like that. Just used to the word "alleged," I suppose.
Perhaps the tech industry's O.J. Simpson feels comfortable tweeting "I maintain my innocence" because he has gotten away with abusive behavior before. During the trial and even after his plea, news outlets were reporting about RadiumOne's impending $100 million IPO without mentioning the charges.
Back in 2010, the management company behind the condos at Infinity filed a complaint against Chahal for continuing to violate building rules, even after they intervened. The complaint says he was belligerent towards the staff, used degrading language, and threw a key fob at a female receptionist. That's the same building where Chahal beat his girlfriend. No allegedly necessary since Chahal pleaded guilty to domestic violence and battery, in case he forgot.
Update: Chahal has deleted the recent tweets. He doesn't pay James Lassart and spin doctor Sam Singer the big bucks for nothing!
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