A well-known hockey blogger has been fired from at least one of his writing gigs after he allegedly sent creepy Twitter direct messages to more than 20 women.
The alleged DMs came from Steve Lepore, a hockey blogger who wrote for Awful Announcing, Rolling Stone, and Sirius XM, according to his Twitter account, which has since been deleted.
Toni McIntyre, a copywriter and hockey fan, first revealed that she received DMs from Lepore in a vague tweet posted on Saturday. She didn’t initially mention him by name.Lepore sent out a number of vague tweets that seemed to apologize for his actions without naming anyone involved, according to the Storify that chronicled the tweets. In the only tweet that was still up at the time, Lepore wrote, “I flirted with someone way too soon on gchat and got called out for it and I need to not do that anymore.”
Having seen Lepore’s apology, McIntyre quickly called him out. He wasn’t hitting on her as he explained on Twitter. He was displaying predatory and creepy behavior—and it’s something he’s apparently done before to multiple women, not just her. And that alone indicated to her that she doesn’t believe he will stop.McIntyre provided screenshots of her conversation with Lepore, someone she’d“‘known’ on Twitter 5 days,” when he sent her the creepy messages. In what’s since been described as a “formulaic approach,” Lepore asked McIntyre to pose for him while he took some photographs. In subsequent DMs, he pressed on to see whether she’d pose nude for him.
She posted the screenshots mainly to warn other female hockey fans and writers on Twitter who may be approached by Lepore, but her tweets seemed to open the floodgates, giving other women who say they’ve received these messages from Lepore the courage to speak out. Since then, McIntyre’s received messages from more than 20 women who had similar experiences. BuzzFeed’s Lindsey Adler and ESPN the Magazine senior editor Megan Greenwell were among those who publicly came out, saying that Lepore sent them messages. Adler was then messaged by other women about Lepore as well.
According to the Storify, Lepore removed his writing credits from his Twitter profile. His author page for SB Nation directs to a 404 error page. Rolling Stone and Sirius XM have yet to make statements, but Awful Announcing, which covered a similar story involving former Yahoo Sports writer Harrison Mooney, quickly announced that it cut ties with Lepore.
“This is personally and professionally painful to me on many levels, the largest one being that Steve's conduct left many feeling uncomfortable and disenfranchised by an all too common theme these days of insensitive, harassing, or oblivious poor treatment of women by men,” Bloguin CEO and Awful Announcing General Manager Ben Koo wrote. “I want to personally apologize for this behavior as well as applaud those who have had courage to share their personal experiences. I'm sorry, you deserve better, and I hope continued discussion will be a catalyst for change going forward.”
Despite asking him to stop messaging her multiple times, Lepore still sent McIntyre what appeared to be an apology email after Awful Announcing posted the statement on his termination.A woman has also accused Lepore of exposing himself to her during a Skype call. H/T Megan Greenwell | Photo via Beatrice Murch/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0) | Remix by Jason Reed