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Judge grants Apple CEO Tim Cook a restraining order against Virginia woman accused of stalking him

Apple CEO Tim Cook waves after speaking at a June 2019 developers conference in San Jose, Calif. (Jeff Chiu/AP)
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The first message Apple says its chief executive received from a woman claiming to be his wife and the mother of his twins arrived in Tim Cook’s inbox on Nov. 2, 2020, at 11:35 p.m.

“I’m really tired,” the 45-year-old Virginia woman wrote, according to court records. “ … You been hurting me so much.”

In the email, the woman recounted a recent dream in which she and Cook went on a cruise together and were later seen in public as a couple, court records state.

But the tone of the woman’s messages swiftly escalated to threats, harassment and stalking, Cook’s private security guard and personal driver wrote in a restraining order petition filed in a California court this month.

In a follow-up email, the woman sent a picture of a firearm and ammunition, according to Cook’s security guard, who said she “appeared twice” at the Apple chief executive’s home.

The security guard wrote in the petition that he was seriously concerned about his safety and the safety of his boss.

Last week, a Santa Clara County Superior Court judge issued a temporary restraining order instructing the woman to stay at least 200 yards away from Cook, his residence, office and vehicle, among other places. The order also prohibits the woman from possessing or buying firearms or ammunition.

An attorney representing Apple did not immediately respond to a message from The Washington Post late Tuesday. The woman also did not respond to messages from The Post, and court records do not list an attorney representing her. No criminal charges have been filed against her at this time.

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Between 2020 and 2022, court records show, the woman emailed Cook, tagged him in social media posts and eventually showed up at his house.

On Nov. 3, 2020, she emailed Cook a picture of a gun, followed by a second message with an image of ammunition, according to court records.

“My new gun. Will never return it at this time before I shoot!” the woman allegedly wrote, adding: “I’m faster than bullets.”

The following day, court records state, she emailed Cook a picture of a loaded gun.

The woman, emails show, also expressed that she wanted to have a sexual relationship with Cook. “I want to meet you,” she allegedly wrote in a Nov. 9, 2020, email. “ … I don’t need your money or business … My patience [is] almost done.”

Then, on Sept. 19, 2021, she emailed him asking to be his roommate in Palo Alto, court records show. On Dec. 18, she allegedly messaged Cook asking for $500 million in cash before she would leave him alone, telling him: “Better listen to me.”

On Jan. 1, 2022, she took to Twitter, using one of two accounts from which she commented about Apple’s CEO, court records state.

This time, she allegedly wrote, “Tim cook will be suicided in his condo,” in a tweet that included his home address.

Three days later, court records show, Cook received another email from the woman, who said she would be moving to his condo “next week” and ordered him to empty the residence.

The woman spent hours emailing Cook, Apple attorney Todd K. Boyer said in court records. She also “created dozens of false corporations in California, Virginia and New York” incorporating the names “Apple” or “Cook,” Boyer wrote in the restraining order petition filed on Jan. 20.

The judge granted the request the next day. The temporary restraining order prohibits the woman from contacting Cook by any electronic means, including on Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat and LinkedIn. It expires March 29.

The woman is due in court for another hearing that day at 9 a.m.