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The founder of a California tech company has resigned after he appeared to post threats to kill President-elect Donald Trump on social media last week, the company confirmed Tuesday.
Matthew Harrigan, who founded PacketSled, a network security company, in 2012, apologized for what he called "a flawed joke" that had been taken out of context. He stressed that his "poor judgment" doesn't represent the views of PacketSled, a startup headquartered in Del Mar, near San Diego.
In a statement Tuesday, the company's board of directors said it "does not condone the comments made by Mr. Harrigan" and had accepted his resignation as president and chief executive, effective immediately. Earlier, the company said that it had placed Harrigan on leave and that it had reported the remarks to the Secret Service.
The Secret Service doesn't comment on presidential security operations, and it couldn't be determined Tuesday night whether a formal inquiry has been opened.
The expletive-filled comments, which appeared in Harrigan's Facebook account, were taken down, but they were preserved in posts by angry social media users, whose authenticity Harrigan did not deny.
"I'm going to kill the president. Elect," read one of them, which was followed shortly by: "Bring it secret service."
"[G]etting a sniper rifle and perching myself where it counts," read another. "Find a bedroom in the whitehouse that suits you [expletive]. I'll find you"
Other posts expressed sentiments like "in no uncertain terms, [expletive] you, America. Seriously. [Expletive] off."
Harrigan apologized on Twitter "for my lack of judgement and offensive commentary."
"I wish you all well," he said.