Bob Lee, founder of Cash App, is fatally stabbed in San Francisco

Bob Lee, founder of Cash App, is fatally stabbed in San Francisco

Bob Lee, founder of Cash App, is fatally stabbed in San Francisco

Bob Lee, a tech executive and investor who founded mobile payment service Cash App, was fatally stabbed in the street in San Francisco on Tuesday, his family said.

The San Francisco Police Department said it responded to a call about a stabbing in the Rincon Hill neighborhood around 2:35 a.m. Tuesday. Police have not identified the victim, a 43-year-old man with “apparent stab wounds”, who died in hospital. But local CBS affiliate KPIX reported that friends of Mr Lee said he was the victim, which was confirmed Wednesday morning on Facebook by his father, Rick Lee of Miami.

Matt Dorsey, the Democratic City Supervisor of San Francisco who represents Rincon Hill, a neighborhood near the Bay Bridge, condos and corporate offices, said on Twitter that Mr Lee’s death was ‘a senseless tragedy which I know is compounded by the fact that no suspects are still in custody’.

Before Mr. Lee joined MobileCoin in 2021, he was the chief technology officer of payments company Square, which was renamed Block in 2021, and was a software engineer at Google. He was also a startup consultant and had invested in companies including SpaceX and Clubhouse, according to his LinkedIn.

Mr Dorsey, the San Francisco supervisor, said he had been speaking with police about the stabbing investigation since Tuesday morning. No arrests have been made in what is being called a police homicide.

“I have also heard from many constituents in the area – some of whom have already told me of their concerns about public safety issues – and I ask everyone to cooperate with the police in their investigation, especially those who have access to surveillance video that can help,” Dorsey said.

At the time of his death, Mr. Lee, 43, was the product manager of MobileCoin, a cryptocurrency startup. MobileCoin founder and chief executive Joshua Goldbard confirmed in an emailed statement that Mr. Lee died on Tuesday but did not give a cause.

Mr. Goldbard said on Twitter that Mr. Lee “was like a brother to me” and had a “kaleidoscopic” mind.

“Pick a topic and Bob would be there with you to tell you all the ways he had ever thought of the idea,” Goldbard said.

Condolences for Mr. Lee spilled across social media platforms on Wednesday as news spread.

He was perhaps best known for his work on Cash App, now owned by Jack Dorsey’s Block company. Mr Dorsey, the former CEO of Twitter, called Mr Lee’s death “heartbreaking” on social media site Nostr. “Bob was instrumental in Square and Cash App,” he wrote.

Managing Director of design platform Figma, Dylan Field, said on Twitter that he first met Mr. Lee in 2006. “He didn’t care that I was only 14 and we were talking tech/knowing programming,” Mr. Field said.

Bill Barhydt, managing director of digital financial platform Abra, said on Twitter that Mr. Lee “was a generous and decent human being who did not deserve to be killed”.

Megan Quinn, a start-up investor, said on Twitter that Mr. Lee was “always encouraging, always optimistic”.

“He was always smiling,” she said. “That’s how I will remember him.”

Violent crime rates in some major cities are still recovering from a 2020 spike associated with the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Across the country, crime has steadily declined for most of the past quarter century.

Homicides in San Francisco have risen slightly in recent years since plummeting in 2019 to 41 people, the lowest number in nearly 60 years, according to the city. The number of homicides rose to 56 deaths in 2022.

As of April 2, there have been 12 homicides in San Francisco this year, according to the San Francisco Police Department. During the same period in 2022, there had been 10 homicides.

Susan C. Beachy contributed to the research.


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