John McAfee: tech millionaire, accused of murder, on the run from the cops, and quite possibly mentally ill. Wired’s Joshua Davis – who had written an in depth article on the man’s life – has reported on his personal experiences with the man that have left him believing he is “unhinged”.
On November 12, Belizean police announced that the anti-virus software tycoon was wanted for questioning in connection with the murder of Gregory Faull, his neighbour on a tropical island. McAfee went on the run, and the police are still looking for him.
A few weeks before Faull was killed and the police went after McAfee, the retired millionaire called me in the middle of the night. He told me that he was staying at a resort near his villa called Captain Morgan’s Retreat and had gone for a walk on the beach at dusk. In a breathless, spooked tone, he recounted how he’d heard loud motors approaching and instantly knew it was the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU), an elite force within the Belize police that had previously detained McAfee on suspicion of manufacturing drugs.
McAfee took cover on a porch, behind some bushes, but said that GSU members materialized out of the darkness and surrounded him without saying anything. They simply stared at him for hours. “It was freaky, freaky, freaky,” he said. By this time, I was accustomed to his manic energy but in this call, he sounded genuinely unhinged.
When you listen to the taped phone conversation above, you have to agree, the man sounds a bit crazy. Elite police forces, surrounding you just for a staring contest. Right. His security guards say they didn’t see anything. McAfee says they have now conveniently “lost their memory”.
Another bizarre occurrence that Davis reports also seems to suggest that McAfee is hallucinating, and possibly on drugs.
On October 20, McAfee was staying at a luxury condo development south of his villa. Around midnight, he heard the sound of the GSU engines again. Samantha, his girlfriend, heard it too and then they noticed that somebody was trying to open their front door. McAfee jammed a bar of soap between the door handle and lock and felt that that would hold them off for awhile. They went on to the second-story balcony, which was 20 feet off the ground. McAfee was desperate to get away and decided to walk along a narrow ledge to his neighbor’s balcony in the darkness.
“This is way too much for someone my age, you know,” he said. “I was way the fuck up there.”
He made it and laid down on his back. Samantha stayed out on their balcony and said men entered, breaking open the front screen door. She could see them inside, but they never came out to talk to her.
“Why wouldn’t they have said to Samantha, ‘Where is he?’” I asked.
“I don’t have a clue,” he responded.
McAfee says there were 30 to 40 police, army, and coast guard personnel, but, as it got light, they disappeared. “These people slowly sort of evaporated,” he said.
At 05h30 that morning, Chris Allnatt [McAfee's neighbour and real estate agent] woke up to watch a soccer match and was astounded to find McAfee on his balcony. He opened the glass door and noticed that McAfee was lying in a pool of his own urine. His clothes were soaked. “What the fuck are you doing here, John?” Allnatt said.Allnatt returned to clean the urine off his balcony and discovered a small plastic bag of a gray powder hidden behind a pot near where McAfee was lying. Allnatt was sure it was drugs, which surprised him. McAfee has insisted that he has been sober since 1983 and has waged his own war on drugs in the small Belizean village of Carmelita.
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