A former executive at Rockstar Games has been accused of groping an ex-designer.
Jeronimo Barrera, who left the company earlier this year to pursue interests in the wider games industry, has been accused of violent, aggressive behaviour towards Rockstar employees in a new report by Kotaku.
According to multiple sources, the former vice president of product development was notorious for screaming at employees and was described as frequently “abrasive” and “volatile”.
Several commenters shared an anecdote claiming Barrera had tackled a designer in a bush under the influence. Others recalled a story where the company had to assure new QA testers that they were still employed after Barrera “fired” them at a dinner party.
But most damning of all is an incident that saw Barrera sexually harass a new hire, designer Colin Bundschu, in 2014.
Multiple sources, including Bundschu himself, confirmed that following a meet-and-greet in California, Barrera invited the designer and colleagues to a nightclub. Bundschu claims a drunken Barrera encouraged him to continue drinking before things became heated on the dance floor.
“He stands up and comes up to me, and I don’t know how to say it other than he starts aggressively groping me,” said Bundschu, recalling the night.
“Out of the blue. There was no warning, no anything; he just goes for it. I just freaked… It felt like an eternity, but it couldn’t have been more than a couple of minutes.”
The harassment continued with an invitation to lap dance and further groping. Bundshu admits to feeling pressured into compliance, with Barrera notorious for firing developers on the spot.
Bundschu has since left the company and industry at large. He wrote about the incident in a self-published book in 2017, albeit with pseudonyms for all parties involved.
While both individuals are no longer at Rockstar, the news is all the more damning for a company with an established history of poor workplace culture.