A University of Idaho professor who wasn’t even in Idaho at the time four students were murdered last month has filed a lawsuit against a TikTok influencer who’s been claiming the professor is responsible for their killings.
As previously reported, four University of Idaho students — Xana Kernodle, Ethan Chapin, Maddie Mogen, and Kaylee Goncalves — were found dead last month.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) November 21, 2022
As of late December, their murders still remained officially unsolved, though to hear TikTok influencer Ashley Guillard tell it, she’s figured it all out.
Guillard “promotes herself on Amazon and TikTok as an Internet sleuth that solves high-profile unsolved murders by consulting Tarot cards, and performing other readings, to obtain information about the murders,” the suit against her reads.
“She has posted many videos on TikTok falsely stating that Plaintiff Rebecca Scofield (a professor at the University) participated in the murders because she was romantically involved with one of the victims Guillard’s statements are false,” it continues.
“Professor Scofield did not participate in the murders, and she had never met any of the victims, let alone entered a romantic relationship with them. Professor Scofield did not commit or in any way participate in the murders of the four students,” it adds.
The suit essentially accuses Guillard of having made up this accusation so that she could more successfully promote her brand.
In her TikTok videos, Guillard said that Scofield planned the murders of Kernodle, Chapin, Mogen, Goncalves with a student named J.D. But in her complaint, Scofield says she’s not even aware of this person.
“Professor Scofield has not met student J.D. and has not ever had him in a class. She has never partnered with him on anything. She did not partner with him to murder the four University of Idaho students,” the complaint reads.
The complaint also slams Guillard for affecting Scofield’s reputation and putting her life at risk.
“Guillard’s false TikToks have damaged Professor Scofield’s reputation. They have caused her significant emotional distress. She fears for her life and for the lives of her family members. She has incurred costs, including costs to install a security system and security cameras at her residence. She fears that Guillard’s false statements may motivate someone to cause harm to her or her family members,” it reads.
Not that Guillard seems to care. If anything, she posted a new TikTok after the lawsuit was filed claiming Scofield will “regret” her decision to file suit:
@ashleyisinthebookoflife #solvingmysteriousdeaths #universityofidahomurder #universityofidaho #unsolvedmysteries #solvedmysteries #rebeccascofield #jackducoeur #moscowpd #kayleegoncalves #madisonmogen #ethanchapin #xanakernodle ♬ original sound – Ashley Solves Mysteries
“People just don’t get it, like I’ve been against people big and small, corporations and giants and systemic policies [and] racism and won. They all regret coming against me. All of them. Now Rebecca is going to be added to that list of regretful people,” she said in the clip above.
The complaint also notes how Guillard’s “false TikToks” have been watched “millions of times and widely reposted by other TikTok users.”
“As University of Idaho policy prohibits romantic relationships between professors and students, Scofield says that her reputation and career at the university was further damaged as a result of Guillard’s actions, and that she was been ‘subject to online ridicule and threats from Guillard’s online commenters,'” according to Law & Crime.
The great irony to Guillard’s accusation is that Scofield wasn’t even in town when the four students were murdered last month.
“Professor Scofield was not in Moscow, Idaho, when the murders occurred. She and her husband were in Portland, Oregon, visiting friends. They stayed in a hotel, checking out in the morning on November 13, after the murders occurred. They drove from Portland to Moscow, a drive of more than five hours, arriving after law enforcement had discovered the murders,” the complaint reads.
Out of apparent kindness, it seems Scofield initially hesitated to file a lawsuit, instead choosing to send Guillard cease and desist letters. But Guillard ignored the threat and continued making false accusations.
@ashleyisinthebookoflife #solvingmysteriousdeaths #universityofidahomurder #universityofidaho #rebeccascofield #jackducoeur #kayleegoncalves #madisonmogen #ethanchapin #xanakernodle #moscowpd #unsolvedmysteries #solvedmysteries ♬ original sound – Ashley Solves Mysteries
“Many TikTok users warned Guillard that her statements were false and that she was defaming Professor Scofield, among others. Guillard did not stop making false and defamatory TikToks despite being warned of their falsity multiple times by persons commenting on her TikToks,” the complaint reads.
“Equally concerning, other TikTok users commented that they believed Guillard’s false statements that Professor Scofield ordered the murder of [the victims], that Professor Scofield was romantically involved with [Goncalves], and that they have wondered when Professor Scofield would be brought to justice,” the complaint continues.
In a statement to Law & Crime, Scofield’s lawyers stressed again that their client has no connections whatsoever to the four victims.
“The statements made about Professor Scofield are false, plain and simple. What’s even worse is that these untrue statements create safety issues for the Professor and her family. They also further compound the trauma that the families of the victims are experiencing and undermine law enforcement efforts to find the people responsible in order to provide answers to the families and the public,” they said.
“Professor Scofield twice sent cease and desist letters to Ms. Guillard, but Ms. Guillard has continued to make false statements, knowing they are false. Thus, this lawsuit became necessary to protect Professor Scofield’s safety and her reputation,” they added.
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