Former College Track Coach Steve Waithe Facing Cyberstalking, Wire Fraud Charges

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistApril 7, 2021

Empty seats inside the Olympic stadium during the athletics competitions of the 2016 Summer Olympics at the Olympic stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, Aug. 12, 2016. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Gregory Bull/Associated Press

Steve Waithe, a former track coach at Northeastern University from 2018-19, was taken into custody by law enforcement officials in Chicago on Wednesday.

Per an official statement from the United States Attorney's Office in Massachusetts, Waithe is facing one count of cyberstalking and one count of wire fraud. 

The criminal complaint against Waithe notes that he is alleged to have "frequently requested to use female athletes' cellphones under the pretense of filming their form at practice and at meets" when he was coaching at Northeastern. 

Waithe also allegedly "perpetrated a scheme to dupe female Northeastern University track and field athletes into sending him nude or semi-nude photos of themselves" dating back to February 2020. 

From a period of nearly four months between June 21, 2020, to Oct. 3, 2020, Waithe is also accused of cyberstalking at least one female student-athlete at Northeastern and allegedly running an "athlete research" or "body development" study in which he used at least one alias to request female student-athletes send him images of themselves in a "uniform or bathing suit to show as much skin as possible."

The charges carry a combined sentence of up to 25 years in prison, six years of supervised release and a $500,000 fine. 

Renata Nyul, a spokesperson for Northeastern, told Tom Winter and Wilson Wong of NBC News that Waithe was fired in February 2019 following "a university investigation into his inappropriate conduct toward female student-athletes."