Breaking News
More () »

Moscow murders: Professor sues Tik-Toker sleuth for defamation

A Tik Tok crime sleuth accused the professor publicly of committing the murders on her account. It gained millions of views.

MOSCOW, Idaho — A University of Idaho professor has filed a lawsuit alleging defamation by a Tik Tok crime sleuth, who accused the professor of murdering the four Idaho students on her account -- which later was reposted and viewed by millions.

A Texas based internet sleuth, Ashley Guillard, posted multiple Tik Toks in November and December accusing University of Idaho Professor Rebecca Scofield of the quadruple murder. Scofield later sued when Guillard didn't take the videos down.

The suit, filed Wednesday, was first reported by the University of Idaho Argonaut.

Guillard says she "solves crimes online" through psychic readings, and her videos have gained thousands of views.

In the videos, Guillard says Scofield was having a relationship with one of the victims and then planned the murders with another student because "(the victim) wanted a break in the relationship" and wanted to "keep from making the relationship public" court filings said.

However, Scofield says in the suit that she didn't even have any of the victims in her classes. The lawsuit says that Scofield was not even in Moscow when the homicides occurred -- she and her husband were in Oregon visiting friends, it said, when the quadruple stabbing occurred off King Road on Nov. 13.

The complaint says that Guillard wrote, "I don't care what y'all say, Rebecca Scofield killed (the victims) and she was the one to initiate the plan..."

Scofield reached out to Guillard to ask her to take the defamatory statements down after the posts were shared by the thousands. However, Guillard did not take them down, the suit said.

Guillard kept posting more videos, the lawsuit said, citing a video that stated, "Rebecca Scofield is going to prison for the murder of the 4 University of Idaho students whether you like it or not."

Some videos about Scofield have 2.5 million likes.

Scofield says in the suit that the false statements have damaged her reputation and caused her to fear for her life and family. She was subject to online threats and ridicule from Guillard's followers, the suit said.

Police have had to ask the public to stop contacting people that may be connected with the victims, and Facebook pages have been made doxxing ex-boyfriends. Some social media pages have started plastering the faces of the victims' friends all over multiple platforms.

A Twitter user even began calling the local bar that Mogen and GonCalves were seen at that night, the Corner Club, and asking the owner if he could provide last names for people she believes the bar is "covering" for. 

"Love starting the day being called a piece of sh-- because I won't give some crazy lady a last name," a Corner Club tweet said. "She’s 'watched all the TikTok’s and knows everything'. Yo, the tip line is 208.883.7180 if you think you know something. All you’re going to get here is a hard time."

Moscow Police Chief James Fry told KTVB Wednesday, "There's a lot of people who... want to be involved on the internet. We are the official source of information." 

Scofield is demanding a jury trial in the case.


Watch more coverage of this story:

Ongoing coverage of the University of Idaho investigation can be found in our YouTube playlist:

Before You Leave, Check This Out