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Tipsheet

Professor Sues TikTok Influencer for Accusing Her of University of Idaho Killings

AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

A professor at the University of Idaho is suing a TikTok influencer for defamation after she posted videos accusing the professor of being involved in the killings of four students in their home last month. 

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The TikTok user, Ashley Guillard, is an “internet sleuth” with over 100,000 followers, according to The Hill. Reportedly, she has posted a dozen videos accusing Rebecca Scofield, the chair of the school’s history department, of being behind the stabbings of the four students last month. 

Recent reports indicated that the case, which gained national attention, may go cold. But, the police chief of Moscow, Idaho said in a recent interview that the case will not go cold. Authorities have not named a suspect in the case and have asked the public to come forward if they have any information that could be helpful to the investigation.

Despite Guillard’s videos accusing Scofield, there is no known evidence linking her to the killings. Last week, the professor filed a lawsuit in federal court in Idaho over the videos (via The Hill):

In a complaint filed in Idaho’s federal district court on Wednesday, Scofield said Guillard’s TikTok videos were false and that she did not comply with two cease-and-desist letters demanding Guillard take down the videos and issue an apology.

Scofield is seeking an unspecified amount of compensatory and punitive damages and has requested a jury trial.

“Guillard’s false TikToks have damaged Professor Scofield’s reputation,” the complaint reads. “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.”

Scofield in the suit also said she was in Portland, Ore., with her husband during the time of the killings and checked out of a hotel in the city hours after the killings occurred.

“Professor Scofield did not commit or in any way participate in the murders of the four students,” the complaint states.

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Reportedly, Guillard said in one of her recent videos that she’s “not stopping” her videos and that she is “gleaming with excitement” to present her ideas about the murders in court. 

Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Ethan Chapin and Xana Kernodle were killed in their off-campus house near the University of Idaho on Nov. 13, KTVB reported. Guillard, who is based in Texas, reportedly “solves” crimes through psychic readings and tarot cards. Her videos regarding the Idaho murders have garnered millions of views.

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