According to a new court filing obtained by The Daily Beast, a former NCAA track and field coach who was arrested last year on charges he used sham social media accounts to deceive female student-athletes into sending him nude photographs of themselves has been arrested again for secretly continuing the sordid scheme while free on pre-trial release.
According to the lawsuit, following his original arrest in April 2021, Steve Waithe Jr., who coached the Northeastern University women’s team in Boston from October 2018 to February 2019, had accessed his Instagram account “at least 135 times” using his parents’ personal devices. An official with the federal probation service asks for Waithe to be locked up because he is accused of harassing women on the site by asking for things like “your most confident sensual photo.”
Born and raised in the Windy City, Waithe has previously coached at Penn State, Illinois Tech, UT, and Concordia University. Case documents state that when authorities searched Waithe’s email account, they discovered hundreds of naked or partially naked images of women who were not expecting to see them.
The 29-year-old Waithe was detained on Thursday for allegedly breaking the terms of his temporary parole, which he was granted by a court in May of 2018. Waithe, who had been residing in Maryland under his father’s supervision, was hauled up by federal agents there. Waithe’s designated attorney, Jane Peachy, sent a message saying “no comment at this time” in an email on Thursday night.
The court put severe restrictions on Waithe’s freedom from prison eighteen months ago, including that he not leave the country, that he not have any contact with victims or witnesses, that he work full-time, and that he have no access to the internet.
Things, however, quickly deteriorated.
The motion from Thursday states that the court had allowed Waithe many delays as she awaited trial.
Waithe was given clearance to attend virtual counseling sessions using Zoom in August of 2021, and he was also allowed to travel to his brother’s home in Chicago to retrieve his belongings and spend the night.
After waiting two months, Waithe finally sought for and received permission to use the internet exclusively in his job hunt. Waithe got a job making deliveries for a uniform cleaning business after his request was granted, but only for a certain number of hours each day.
Waithe was quickly given permission to visit the Virginia office and go to the Pennsylvania retreat on business time. The court granted Waithe and his father permission to go to New Jersey in July to see extended relatives.
A laptop for Waithe was requested by her attorney on October 19, 2022, and the U.S. probation office granted the request “with a prohibition against social media, with the installation of the monitoring software, and ongoing prohibition of contact with any witnesses or alleged victims,” the filing states. Waithe “wanted to pursue a jail writing/mental health project with John’s [sic] Hopkins,” it says. It was agreed that “Mr. Waithe” would utilize the computer only for work-related tasks and projects.
According to the paperwork, probation officers found out on October 20 that Waithe had formed a limited liability company (LLC) called The Waithe Foundation without first obtaining permission from the court. Waithe “had been accessing the internet with the supervision of his father on an unmonitored device since August 2022,” the probation office found out on the same day.
According to the document, Waithe claimed that nothing malicious had transpired and that he was only doing “market research” on his jail writing and mental health initiative using the tablet. Waithe’s dad was “told not to let his son use the gadget until monitoring software was put in place and he gave his consent.”
The federal government obtained a search warrant for Waithe’s primary Instagram account, which he uses under the handle “mrhopskipjump,” and used it to learn that he “was regularly logging into his account and attempting to persuade additional potential victims to send him images of themselves,” as the filing from Thursday states.
Waithe “compliments a female Instagram user and offers to pay her in exchange for allowing him to make ‘drawings’ using photos of her,” the filing states of one DM exchange from the spring of this year. He requests several photographs of you from various angles, including close-ups of your tattoos so that he may better capture their intricate designs in his drawings (dated June 2, 2022). There would be no public announcement of this, ever. I’d love to mail it to you, but I need it for my portfolio, which I can deliver in person.
Waithe “informs another female Instagram user that she is in’such great shape’ and offers her $50 to participate in a’study,'” the filing continues, referencing a conversation from early June. Then he adds, “Of your most confident sensual picture” and “Haha it’s just you being yourself it’s a portrait.”