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Former Track and Field Coach Convicted for Ploying Nude Photos From 50 Victims

He was accused of defrauding 50 women in a nude photo scam and attempted to obtain more photos from 72 victims.
Cover Image Source: Pexels | Photo by Ron Lach
Cover Image Source: Pexels | Photo by Ron Lach

Despite stringent laws in place, scammers persist in defrauding the public, creating a pervasive sense of threat nationwide. In a recent incident, a former track and field coach from the Northeastern region was arrested in Chicago and sentenced to five years in prison. He is accused of attempting to coerce innocent female athletes into sending him partially nude photos by setting up fake email and social media accounts and then blackmailing them.

The track coach was sentenced for his henious crime. Image Source: Unsplash|Photo by Niu Niu
 Image Source: Unsplash | Photo by Niu Niu

Steve Waithe, a former coach at several universities, including Northeastern University in Boston, Penn State University, Illinois Institute of Technology, the University of Tennessee, and Concordia University Chicago, confessed to his crimes. Last year, he pleaded guilty to 12 counts of wire fraud, one count of computer fraud conspiracy, and one count of conspiracy to commit computer fraud.

Furthermore, he admitted to cyberstalking one victim through text messages and direct messages on social media, as well as hacking into her Snapchat account.

Prosecutors sought an 84-month extension to his sentence, citing the harm he caused to numerous individuals. Having served 17 months of his sentence already, he is expected to serve an additional 34 months under supervision. Waithe was accused of defrauding 50 women in a nude photo scam and attempted to obtain more photos from 72 victims.


"These weren’t just victims that lost some money. These were people who lost their privacy, their sense of safety, and the destruction of trust. Many of them cared for you, Mr. Waithe, and you broke their hearts. It was very much a breach of trust," said Judge Patti Saris.

Waithe would approach his female athletes, claiming he found their nude photographs online and offered to help prevent any embarrassment or damage to their reputation. He would then request additional photos under the guise of investigating the source of the circulated images.

He allegedly created two fake profiles, "Katie Janovich" and "Kathryn Svoboda," to solicit nude photos from female victims, claiming it was for athlete research or body development purposes.


Continuing his deceitful tactics, Waithe would request female players to surrender their phones under the pretext of recording their performance. However, he abused this trust by going through their phones and exploiting any images he found for personal gratification.

"To many of the victims in this case, Steve Waithe presented himself as a relatable coach and mentor. To other victims, he was a work colleague or a random acquaintance. To still others, he was considered a childhood friend," the prosecutors stated. 

Recounting her experience, one victim revealed, "He was willing to violate university rules. He was willing to violate the conditions of release. I don’t believe even after he gets out he will stop. I'm honestly begging that you give him as much time as possible."