Last week, allegations of past abuse surfaced against TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington. Late last night, he addressed those claims, posting a response on his own blog, UnCrunched. It’s a denial in the strongest, most straightforward language:
There have been some extremely serious and criminal allegations against me over the last week. All of the allegations are completely untrue, and I’ve hired a law firm to represent me in the legal actions against the offending parties.
I know this isn’t, for now, much information. I will have a full and complete response to these allegations sometime later this week. My goal will be to direct as much sunlight as possible on the issues so that the absolute truth can be known and I can begin to put my life back together.
He also adds that he’s asked his attorneys “to contact appropriate law enforcement agencies about these false allegations.”
Robert Scoble also popped up in the comments with an apology for every getting involved in the first place. In a Facebook post, he wrote: “I used this to get a dig in on Mike for an unrelated issue and that just wasn’t cool. I’m sorry Mike.”
None of the claims made on my behalf over the past week are accurate. I’m not inclined to comment on my personal life, Mike and I remain friends.
I’m focused on business and my career.
I hope we can all get back to the business of building innovative companies in the spirit of what makes this industry great. I wish everyone well who is involved. I have no further comment on the matter.
(Update, 2:50 p.m.) Former TechCrunch CEO Heather Harde has also published a statement of “full support of Michael Arrington” on Facebook. She writes:
“We operated TechCrunch out of Michael’s house for the first two years, so to say that I’ve seen the inner workings of Michael Arrington’s personal life is a gross understatement. As any startup, we worked long hours, and I overlapped significant blocks of time with Michael’s roommates, friends and girlfriends. I would have detected patterns of abusive physical behavior if they had been present.”
“I simply do not believe any of the allegations to be true,” she adds.
She also casts doubt on the credibility of Mr. Calacanis and Mr. Feldman on the matter:
“‘Former Friends’ Jason Calacanis and Loren Feldman have been estranged from Michael Arrington longer than they ever were friends, and they are not reliable character witnesses on this matter.”
Meanwhile, the original accuser, Jenn Allen, seems to be sticking to her story:
— Jenn Allen (@JennAllen) April 8, 2013
(Update, 5:56 p.m.) Well, this just took another turn. A bit of background: When Mr. Arrington posted his denial of the allegations late last night, Robert Scoble promptly responded with an update, apologizing for using the controversy to get a dig in. Well, the original accuser, Ms. Allen, turned up in the comments on Mr. Scoble’s apology, doubling down on her claims. Mr. Scoble wasn’t having it: “Sorry, Jenn Allen, but if you had a case you should have made it to the authorities, not on social media.”
Now Ms. Allen has posted another Facebook update:
UPDATE: My sources tell me Robert Scoble is actually Michael Arrington today on FB. Scoble got hacked. I’m just trying to help spread the truth and awareness of what he did and does. As far as I know I haven’t been hacked yet by Mike (today or in the recent weeks) but he has hacked my phone in the past and caught him in the process of doing it.
We’ve reached out to Mr. Scoble for comment on her claims.
Mr. Arrington tweeted a screencap of Ms. Allen’s update:
Everything else aside, Jenn needs help, now. Someone, a friend, relative, anyone, needs to reach out. immediately. twitter.com/arrington/stat…
— Michael Arrington (@arrington) April 8, 2013
(Update, April 9th, 8:39 a.m.) ”There is no truth to the rumors I have been hacked,” Mr. Scoble told Betabeat.