According to the report, an employee had returned to the electric-car company’s office in September post-resignation to say goodbye to former coworkers when word reached Musk that he had quit. It was at that point, Bloomberg reported, that Musk unleashed a profanity-laced tirade against the former employee.
“I will nuke you,” Musk yelled as the incident spilled from inside Tesla out into the parking lot, according to one of Bloomberg News’ sources.
Tesla confirmed in a statement to Business Insider that an incident between Musk and a former employee took place but said there was no “physical altercation.”
“Elon did exit an employee at our Fremont delivery center last year due to concerns about his performance, however there was no physical altercation whatsoever,” a spokesperson said. “Those reports are simply untrue as confirmed by numerous people that observed the incident first-hand.”
Tesla’s board of directors also confirmed in a statement with the same wording that it had completed a review of the incident and also found no evidence of a physical altercation.
Friday’s report is far from the first time Musk has been accused of temper issues. In December, Wired reported that some Tesla employees were told not to walk past his desk because of the possibility of an unfavorable interaction jeopardizing their career.
Many sources who spoke with Wired at the time also described frequent outbursts in which Musk would shout at people and call them “idiots.” A senior engineering executive said employees even had a name for Musk’s behavior: “the idiot bit.”