A software engineer tweeting about being doxxed seemed like an isolated — if unfortunate, and not entirely uncommon — occurrence. But one such incident Wednesday evening revealed that the alleged harasser — Alex Gulakov, another tech worker — had also allegedly threatened and harassed another woman in the tech industry as well.
Former Google engineer Kelly Ellis live-tweeted an intensifying situation on Wednesday night about another former Googler who allegedly tweeted rape threats at her, repeatedly called her phone, and showed up near her home, causing her to get an emergency protective order.
So I'm being doxxed by the guy who sent me a rape threat, called and texted me all day yesterday, and then turned up at my home yesterday.
— Kelly Ellis (@justkelly_ok) January 3, 2018
For Ellis, it started on Tuesday with a tweet from a stranger. When she spoke up, other women — two of which spoke with SF Weekly — quickly told similar stories of the same individual’s alleged harassment, including a Twitter user who says he’s made violent threats against her since 2011.
According to his LinkedIn, Gulakov last worked at PhotoKeeper in 2016 and spent just a few months at Google in 2014.
Just minutes after the initial tweet, Ellis tells SF Weekly, she allegedly received a call through Google Voice with his name. It quickly turned into a rant about how her conduct as a feminist hurts women. She says she used colorful language and hung up — until he called four or five more times.
Screenshots of subsequent texts that Ellis shared show Gulakov’s attempt to classify the rape and death threats as “obvious trollbait.” He then accused Ellis of bullying and harassing him. Gulakov allegedly told her his location, which was just two doors down from her home.
Police showed up 10 to 15 minutes after she called 911 on Tuesday night. Ellis says they took her information and screenshots, but told her that because he didn’t try to break into her house, Gulakov’s behavior didn’t qualify for an emergency protective order.
This escalated to an even scarier place, so I don't want to get into it much further. But I am getting the assistance I need. Thanks for everyone's support. This isn't okay, and I won't be bullied or threatened into silence.
— Kelly Ellis (@justkelly_ok) January 3, 2018
By Wednesday morning, Ellis filed for a temporary restraining order with her lawyers against the 26-year-old Gulakov.
But more harassment followed, this time from new Twitter accounts and 4chan with her phone number and address made public. Neither could be directly tied back to Gulakov, but the timing is oddly coincidental. The 4chan post stated that Ellis “should be raped to teach her a lesson about picking petty fights with men for attention.”
While waiting for the police for the second night in a row, Ellis decided it wasn’t safe for her to stay at home, so she left for a hotel.
Ellis says Gulakov ceased contacting her since then, but she is worried he may be planning an angry response to the restraining order. This is a worry that fellow software engineer Ingrid Avendaño shares.
Police didn’t take me seriously when I went to them about Alex Gulakov for harassing/stalking me. He posted manifestos about me with my picture, found my address in a very scary way and talked about me getting raped and killed and how that’d make him a hero for men’s freedom. pic.twitter.com/tjXaXvXdvS
— Ingrid Avendaño (@ingridavendano) January 4, 2018
…seriously Alex Gulakov, back off. Many of us are aware of you’re shenanigans and you’re inappropriate messages to women in tech. pic.twitter.com/Op4aOy4hbf
— Ingrid Avendaño (@ingridavendano) November 5, 2017
Ellis plans to stay away from her home, and the situation has interfered with her work. In the meantime, she’s working with her lawyers to press charges before her temporary restraining order runs out.
Based on our own research, it does not appear that Gulakov has a criminal record.
SF Weekly staff reached out to Gulakov for comment. He replied with a link to a Reddit post, in subreddit The_Donald that was deleted quickly after we saw it. In the post, titled “Kelly Ellis is fake threat accuser to Alex Gulakov, SJWs are the real bullies” was a series of screenshots of text messages, presumably exchanged between Gulakov and Ellis. In them, one person — presumably Gulakov — apologizes for an “offensive provocative statement.”
“Trolling is part of the internet culture,” the sender continues. “There is much worse things that are always going to be said online. The way you react is exactly what trolls want and will only justify more anti-censorship hatred on women in tech.”
This is a developing story. Check back for more updates.