(Bloomberg) -- Dan Price, who gained fame in 2015 for cutting his salary as the head of Gravity Payments to help fund raises for his entire staff, resigned this week under a cloud of allegations of sexual assault and abuse.
Read Bloomberg Businessweek’s 2015 feature on Dan Price
Price, who founded Gravity 18 years ago, announced his departure on Twitter Wednesday. Tammi Kroll, who has served as chief operations officer of the company since 2015, will run the Seattle-based firm, which processes credit card payments and merchant services for small businesses. In a companion message that appeared in Price’s tweet, Kroll said the company “supports his decision to step aside.”
“My No. 1 priority is for our employees to work for the best company in the world, but my presence has become a distraction here,” Price said in his tweet. “I also need to step aside from these duties to focus full time on fighting false accusations made against me. I’m not going anywhere.”
Price’s departure as chief executive officer came shortly before the New York Times published a report detailing allegations of abuse and sexual assault made by several women. According to the report, the police department in Palm Springs, California, on Monday submitted a rape investigation to the Riverside County district attorney’s office regarding an incident that occurred in a hotel in April 2021.
Gustavo Araiza, a lieutenant with the Palm Springs police department confirmed that the case is active pending Riverside County’s decision. John Hall, the public information officer for Riverside’s district attorney’s office, said the department has received the case for review.
Earlier this year, the Associated Press reported that Price faced assault charges in Seattle, Washington. In May, he pleaded not guilty to charges of misdemeanor assault and reckless driving, the Seattle Times reported.
Representatives for Price and Gravity Payments didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Price also didn’t respond to a direct message on Twitter.
In 2015, Price announced he was raising the base pay at Gravity Payments to $70,000 a year, and cutting his $1.1 million compensation to help cover the cost. In the years since, Price has used social media to build a public persona that’s opposed to corporate greed.
A December 2015 Bloomberg Businessweek article by Karen Weise, who also wrote the New York Times story, previewed a TEDx talk given by Kristie Colon, Price’s ex-wife. In it, Colon read from a journal and alleged her then-husband, whom she did not name, physically abused her. The talk was never published, and Price said the incidents “never happened” when Bloomberg Businessweek asked him about her claims.
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