I have become that person dragged into a mess because I thought I was doing the right thing and helping. Only to find out the person I intended to help had malicious motives unbeknownst to me. For anyone out there willing to read this, this is me trying to publicly get the record straight before these malicious individuals control the narrative. I’ve tried several non public avenues to no immediate avail and at this point feel backed into a corner by a journalist willing to misuse her position of power as a media personality.
For context I’m dealing with the self proclaimed “most gullible man in Cambridge” Bruce Hay featured in a summer article in The Cut, written by Kera Bolonik and published by NYMagazine.
Here’s the link if you’re unfamiliar with the story, but before you read be aware that there is much disinformation, and I can now attest to that it is most likely a fantastical tale to get revenge against Mischa Haider, as the article says the women claim.
You may be thinking, “wow, what a crazy elaborate story and scam these woman were running!?” I can assure you that I was led to believe the same thing after reading the article but in my conversations with both Bruce and Kera there is much to this story that is spun, if not downright lies. Upon confronting them about the misinformation, I have found myself in a precarious situation that defied my expectations as to the recourse of trying to do the right thing. With journalistic integrity lost, Kera Bolonik shared my confidential and off record information with Bruce Hay, including personal text exchanges that she pressed me to send her and assured me confidentiality and that they were off the record. I fear now that Bolonik’s campaign to exonerate a manipulative powerful man has put me in their crosshairs. Journalists are supposed to protect sources but I’ve been directly compromised by Kera Bolonik.
Currently Hay is spreading rumors and lies and about me which is putting me in a tough spot. However given how Bolonik has no issue ruining lives/attacking people with misinformation, as well as the fact that NYMag has no qualms about publishing this kind of material, it’s sincerely daunting as I feel way over my head. The way she punished two women who didn’t go along with her (she blamed them for not talking to her and then flipped and said she had spoken to Mischa off record and made fun of what Mischa had supposedly told her) has now scared me also. I reached out to NYMag last week on November 18th (Email with identifying personal info about some individuals redacted is included here. In my email to NYMag I also forwarded correspondence from Bruce Hay which I won’t publish here publicly since it’s communication between him and me.) to see how the could ensure my confidential information was not misused and how they intended to address the journalistic malpractice, but received no response. At the very least I expected NYMag to respond, take my concerns seriously maybe take steps to investigate or give assurance no information would be improperly used without my consent. If you are a person concerned about journalist ethics, I urge you to contact NYMag and ask them to look into this. Please ask about why my concerns we not responded to, investigated, or even acknowledged.
Now, let’s go back to that start of this whole mess. About a year ago I was contacted by an individual who claimed to be working on behalf of law enforcement. He was trying to gather information about Maria-Pia Shuman. A name I had never heard before and therefore brushed it off as a something that I could not help with. I was contacted again by the same man around the time the article was published and realized that not only did I know of Maria-Pia Shuman, I had dated her ~6 years ago but I knew her by Maria Vizia. Now I can’t say what her reasoning for using a different name was but I can say that we had a good but short lived relationship with an abrupt end and I never heard from her since then. That relationship did cause me pain but in no way do I believe Maria was caught up in an elaborate scam to defraud and extort me. I later learned after Bruce Hay turned on me, that the individual that had contacted me was indeed a Private Investigator hired by Bruce Hay to likely dig up dirt under the guise of law enforcement. I also found out through a lawyer that this PI had done this trick with other people and also through another lawyer that Bruce Hay has called him and impersonated people.
I was encouraged by this person claiming to be law enforcement to reach out to Bruce Hay and did so willingly to offer my support, having read the article in a state of horror and disbelief and seeing the Maria I thought I knew carrying out some elaborate scam. Did I love her at one point, yes, did she hurt me by leaving with little explanation, yes, was I out for some revenge against her, no, was I willing to help someone I didn’t know who was. stuck in a seemingly terrible situation that I was vaguely connected to, sure.
After a few brief conversations with Bruce, he put me in touch with Bolonik as an opportunity to speak to a neutral journalist. Though much of my relationship with Maria was innocuous and not sensational, Bolonik requested my old communications with Maria. Having consulted with lawyers, they told me to be careful sharing but if I chose to do so it would be under the explicit terms of confidentiality and off record. Little did I know, both Bruce and Bolonik were desperately trying to piece together a story that fit into their narrative. They lead me to believe that I should be suspicious of the abrupt ending to my relationship with Maria as it must be tied into to their evil plan of destroying men’s lives. It became clear to me towards the end of our interactions that she was searching for whatever damning information I could provide about Maria. I made clear at the beginning and end of each interaction that all of our conversations were off record and confidential. Any time I would answer Bolonik’s questions that did not make Maria purely evil, she would push back and tell me how dangerous and horrible these women were and tell me things she had heard from other men about what they did.
At this point, I have sufficient evidence and conclusive proof that following each conversation, Bolonik and Hay would discuss my story and share my confidential information including documents and text messages I shared about my personal relationship with Maria. The lack of journalist ethics is baffling as within hours of sending the text messages to Bolonik, Bruce excitedly suggested me meet up or call him to discuss more. We spoke on the phone and even in the first call when I didn’t give him info he wanted or respond right away to his texts, he became threatening and angry and then said he was sorry. He also spoke to me about recording phone calls which was weird and how different states had different laws for recording. I told my lawyer about how I was a bit uncomfortable after this all. More advise from a lawyer who was equally concerned about this suggested that if I was in a location that allowed one party consent to record conversations, go ahead and record as an insurance policy. The recordings were unlikely to be needed but I’m sure glad I took that advise because I now have recordings to protect myself from their lies.
In my next call with Bruce he was speaking like he knew what was in the text messages I sent Kera Bolonik and when I asked him if Kera had sent him the messages I sent her, he said she had. To be honest, at that time I found it worrying that Bolonik shared them and became suspicious why she did that when we were clear it was confidential and off record and didn’t even ask me or let me know. The more I spoke to them, the more it dawned on me that they freely discussed my conversations between themselves and Kera also told me all sorts of info about other people she was talking to.
I was already concerned about becoming too involved with such a public matter and. my concerns about this information sharing was warranted and I tried avoiding Bruce but he would keep texting and reaching out and if I ignored him a couple days he would contact me again.
Hay and Bolonik convinced me that I should pursue legal options against Maria for emotional distress caused at the end of the relationship claiming it was a deliberate attempt to disrupt men’s lives and they also suggested I had claims to a paternity case because Maria also had a baby roughly 9 months after we separated. I was very hesitant to get involved legally as the cost and disruption to my own life didn’t seem worth it. Regardless Bolonik had put me in touch with two lawyers, Doug Brooks (represents Hay) and Howard Cooper (represents Jay Scuteri who Bruce also found and persuaded to sue Maria and Mischa like he tried to do with me). Originally I thought maybe we were connected to help me if I decided on legal action but really that were also just interested in finding dirt on Maria. Now, you may not recognize their names but these are no B League lawyers. Howard Cooper is more prominent, representing the likes of Alan Dershowitz defend against one of Jeffery Epstein’s notable victims, Virginia Roberts. It gets better. Come to find out Bruce hay is recognized as one of the top constitutional lawyers in the country and is also married to a federal prosecutor Jennifer Zachs, who would also get on the phone with me. You may now understand why I feel a bit over my head.
Bruce made it clear that if I were to take Maria to court, I would almost certainly get a default judgement because there’s no way Maria would return to the country for deposition due to the fact that he already filed a credit card fraud case that led to a warrant. He claimed this warrant would also lead to a default judgement for Jay Scuteri in his emotional distress case and he and Cooper were hoping for that. This clear collaboration benefits both yet he even says the fraud is a small amount, and hard to prove and they would deny it so nothing would likely happen to them but the goal was to keep them out of the country to get the default judgement.
In the process of trying to convince me to take legal action, Bruce shared with me the names of all the lawyer representing Maria and Mischa Haider, as well as other documents like his texts and emails with Maria and Mischa and also documents from Harvards confidential Title IX investigation via email and mostly Dropbox. In opening up the Dropbox folder, Bruce had also unintentionally shared a folder with three videos including an incredibly damaging video recording that took place just after the alleged sexual assault involving Mischa Haider by Bruce Hay. The content of the video was undeniably incriminating and disturbing. From previously describing to me how the event could have never occurred, as Bruce was not in the house around the time of the assault, to after I saw the video, saying perhaps he had been there a few times to help the women clean but nothing sexual happened with anyone. Pressed further, Bruce once again changed his story that he had stayed in the house over night but only with Maria present. He sent me another screenshot thread of text messages between Mischa and Maria from what he said were things Mischa submitted to Title IX and that would indicate he and Maria were there alone however the time stamp from the texts were actually from one day before the video. At this time his partner (Jennifer Zachs) was added to the phone call. She also sounded genuinely surprised and confused that Bruce had stayed in the house over night and had even been in the house at all around that date and Bruce sounded like he was caught in a major lie. Nevertheless both Bruce and Jennifer said that the context of the video is not important, only the fact it was illegally obtained with out the consent of Bruce. This was a new point Jennifer made and she said Bruce should actually have reported that video to police for being illegal and Bruce said “Jennifer you’re a really good lawyer.” The two began pressuring me to go to the police and report this video as illegally obtained. Bruce offered to Uber me to his place so I could also say that he had told me it was without his consent. I said that the whole situation was concerning and what should I explain about what happened in the video and both Bruce and Jennifer said it didn’t matter and I shouldn’t discuss that and just let Bruce handle those questions since he was there.
I was extremely uncomfortable with this situation, it would have been filing a false police report because I believed that Bruce was aware of it being recorded, and especially at one point of the video he is looking directly toward the camera. Bruce’s last attempt to change the story was that he did stay in the house the night of the alleged assault, had sex with Maria, ejaculated, but the woman must have planted it on Mischa’s clothing the next morning to frame him while they recorded it because he “never really slept with Mischa”. The tone which he said that with implied something sexual probably happened which is totally different from what he had said all along. If you are even remotely a logical person, you have to wonder how none of this makes absolutely any sense! How does a story change so many times yet the final result is a complete 180 of the original?
How would you feel about this sort of pressure from two top legal professionals to file a false police report, when you know for a fact that at least Bruce is clearly lying and manipulative? Then take into account between the two of them, there is no doubt they have friends in high places? When it was obvious that I was not going along with their plan, Zachs immediately changed tactics and told Bruce they would speak later and tried to tell him not to have me there when he reported to the police.
Contrary to Bruce and Jennifer, I do believe the context of the video is extremely important. What is clearly shown in the video is Mischa Haider confronting Bruce Hay while standing in a room with a bathroom connected to it. In the room there is a mattress on the ground with no sheets. Bruce is in the bathroom washing the sheets while Mischa visually shows what appears to be semen on her clothing. Mischa is audibly upset asking “Why did you ejaculate on me?”. Bruce who does not deny this happening responds, “I’m sorry, it was an accident.” He say this multiple times, he clearly understands the question and is responding. Mischa also asks why he is washing the sheets to which he responds that he’s willing to wash her clothing as well.
I thought to myself, this is certainly something the “neutral” reporter would need to know! Perhaps she had also been duped into believing Bruce Hays lies and could find a way to distinguish fact from fiction based on very clear evidence. My last phone conversation with Kera Bolonik was among the most unprofessional I’ve ever had. I told her that I had witnessed some evidence that clearly made me question Bruce. Bolonik tried at first to stay off that topic, I sensed that Bruce had already told her about the incriminating evidence I saw. When I was able to get a word in about it she was adamantly defending Bruce Hay, speaking/yelling over me at times. Bolonik was audibly angry, as though it was personal for her, either way it was full of hate towards Maria and Mischa. She claimed the video was surely recorded without Bruce’s consent. Mind you, I told Bolonik I saw evidence, I hadn’t brought up the fact it was a video yet.
The craziest thing that Hay, Zachs, and Bolonik all reiterated? The content and context of the video does not matter as it has no impact or bearing on any legal proceedings I may have against Maria and that the video was illegal. Seeing that I had been spoon fed (more like force fed) lies about how purely evil these women were and their absolute hatred for men, but witnessing video that directly conflicted that narrative made we question a lot. And to any true journalist, it would also make them question many things as well.
I posed questions to Bolonik, saying “perhaps these women do scam people, but have also been sexually assaulted?” Her response was that it just wasn’t possible and they’d accuse me of rape too if they had the chance. It was almost a threat and she was like, “have you ever raped Maria?” And I said no, and she was like, “well I guess we’ll find out when I sniff around and try to see what she’s told people about you.” I asked “don’t you think a woman with documented history of casual hookup with many men, may be more likely to experience sexual assault just based on odds alone?” Her response that each accusation made by them was unequivocally false and having many sexual partners doesn’t not increase any risk of sexual violence. This made literally no sense. I even asked if “maybe the women were afraid of also being accused of illegally recording the video?” Her response was that if it were her she would have not been perturbed and reported the video to the police, even if it got her in trouble and a real victim would do that. Anyone who knows anything about our legal system, including the cop I reported this first to, knows it does not favor sexual assault survivors and majority of victims don’t come forward whether because of stigma, or victim blaming such as what I witnessed from Kera Bolonik. Ultimately she suggested I make amends with Hay and that he must have a logical explanation for the video but either way he is 100% innocent.
The part that has always gotten to me is that no one has shown me any reason to believe that these women actually lied about being sexually assaulted and Bolonik and Bruce didn’t give me anything specific when they would just tell me the women were lying and I would ask for why they thought that. After seeing the video and then Bruce’s changing story, I believe he’s lying. The other thing in this is that Bruce told me Maria had confided in him that Jay Scuteri had raped her when she had told him about him and Mischa also told him he had raped Maria. I told him that whole thing made me uncomfortable and he agreed that it’s possible Maria was raped so then this is even more messed up what they’re doing. Shouldn’t they have proof that Maria lied about being raped before publicly humiliating her like this?
One other side story Bruce divulged to me was how he yelled transphobic slurs toward Mischa over the phone. Out of frustration and anger he said “How about I call you SHIT?! SHE/HE/IT!” Once again Bruce claims it was illegally recorded over the phone, then sent to Mischa from his phone as a voice mail while Mischa reported it to Title IX as a voicemail. I’ll let you make up your mind which version sounds more believable. Once again I believe the content of the recording here is far more important than how it may have been recorded. To be honest, I’m not very legally savvy, I don’t know what the legal implications are associated with how it’s recorded, what I do know is that it’s really transphobic verbal assault. Nonetheless, Kera Bolonik brushes it off as him saying things he didn’t mean while angry at women trying to ruin his life and I should be understanding of him. I’ve not been the most informed on trans issues but even I would never think that language is ok. Altogether it paints a very clear picture of what kind of people Bruce Hay and Kera Bolonik are.
It was abundantly clear that Kera had no interest in hearing the full story and was very obviously trying to cover for Bruce. She said she would follow up with me in about a week, it’s been about a month and a half, but seeing as I didn’t reconcile with Bruce Hay, like she asked me to do, she likely had no reason to keep up correspondence. Knowing the truth has made me a liability to their story and therefore Bruce has made it a priority in recent weeks to try and gather information on me from lawyers he knows I’ve spoken to. He even told Maria’s lawyer that I was pursuing compensation from them and made up lies about things I said about lawyers showing me the video that I never even met or spoke to (I have not and am not pursuing any compensation from anyone). It was obvious that he makes up totally crazy stories to cover his tracks and starts attacking anyone who confronts him.
The same time, on October 15 and 16, that I spoke to Kera about this I also called law enforcement and shared this information with a detective.
I also took the issue of witnessing the video to the Cambridge PD and other law enforcement who said there was indeed a file open on the sexual assault in question. Under suggestion of the police I also took this matter that day to Harvard’s Title IX coordinator who connected me to a person at Harvard Law School. Both the police and Title IX person seemed to concur that the content of the video was certainly more important than how it was obtained seeing as sexual assault is a crime. They asked far more questions than Kera Bolonik did because they were truly concerned about the possibility for a sexual assault having occurred. Over the course of a few weeks I spoke to several people in law enforcement.
I’ve seen the damage Bolonik has done to other people who have crossed Bruce Hay and have first hand experienced Hays anger when you don’t respond promptly enough or go against the grain. Once I became suspicious I was careful to be able to document all conversations. Since having rumors and lies spread about me I’ve reached out to a respectable journalistic entity, who agreed Bolonik’s conduct was concerning and that this would be something they would cover normally, but unfortunately didn’t have enough available staff at the moment to give it the dedication it deserved. I thought of other journalists to contact but previously Kera and Bruce had boasted to me that journalists who were contacted by Mischa and Maria to share their side would report back to her and state they would never touch anything that criticized Kera, so. I was wary of contacting other journalists since they seem to cover for her.
I’m pretty disheartened by this situation knowing that Bolonik is fully capable of misusing her power as a reporter against me and knowing I’m not on an equal field when she betrays trust about confidential and off record information has made me extremely vulnerable to attacks from her and Bruce Hay. I have no platform where as they have the backing of a national magazine. If everything I learned through this process the past few months is true, I feel sorry for both Maria and Mischa and I’m afraid of what happened to them could happen to me or anyone who crosses Kera and Bruce. Publicly being dragged through the dirt, cast as “evil”, “soulless”, “unscrupulous” when in all reality you’re actually the true victim. It’s clear from my conversations with her that Bolonik is looking exclusively to trash these women and that’s obvious and for her to do that from a huge platform against people without one is scary.
When journalists are tasked with holding people accountable, who do you turn to when they are the bad actors in the arena? If everyone covers for their journalist and writer friends, then where is any oversight when lives are destroyed? I shouldn’t be afraid that if I say something inconvenient to a media person that she will destroy my life and privacy.
I really hope that the entity I contacted or other journalism bodies investigate what Bolonik has been doing because it looks like NYMag does not care to even respond. I’m happy to cooperate with any investigation and provide whatever I can in terms of evidence.