MOSCOW, Idaho — A TikToker who claimed a University of Idaho professor was behind the four killings in Moscow last year is standing by her accusations in new court documents filed last week, saying the statements she made were "substantially true" so the professor has no right to sue her for defamation.
Rebecca Scofield, a professor at the University of Idaho, filed a defamation lawsuit in December of 2022 against TikTok personality Ashley Guillard for her false statements about the murders that went viral on the social media site. One TikTok accusing Scofield of the murders received 2.5 million views.
Scofield later sued when Guillard refused to take her videos down.
Guillard claimed she has spiritual abilities that led her to believe Scofield was behind the killings of Ethan Chapin, Xana Kernodle, Madison Mogen and Kaylee Goncalves in a plot to conceal an affair with Goncalves -- and sent those "tips" to Moscow Police Department.
Rather, Bryan Kohberger, 28, is charged with the murders and faces the death penalty if convicted. Moscow Police have even said publicly that Scofield is not involved -- she wrote in her lawsuit she was out of town when the murders occurred on Nov. 13, 2022, and did not know any of the students.
Guillard filed multiple counterclaims in response to Scofield's lawsuit on July 10. Guillard now says she was silenced by Scofield's attorneys and that Scofield conspired with her attorneys to avoid prosecution in the murders.
"Plaintiff Rebecca Scofield is at least 51% at fault for being accused of the allegations. Therefore, the plaintiff Rebecca Scofield may not recover damages," Guillard writes in the counterclaims, as she is representing herself in the matter. "The statements were made in the best interest of public safety."
Guillard says that she suffered damages from the publicity of the suit, rather than Scofield, who previously stated the false claims from TikTok have damaged her reputation and caused her to fear for her life and family.
Scofield's attorneys, Wendy Olson, Elijah Watkins and Cory Carone responded in a filing, calling Guillard's comments in the opposition brief "increasingly inflammatory."
"Guillard is free to practice any 'spirituality' that she likes, but that 'spirituality' does not excuse attacking another person’s reputation or warrant using this Court as a platform to harass Professor Scofield, drive up litigation expenses, and further Guillard’s scheme to make 'millions of dollars,'" the attorneys write. They say Guillard has never even alleged a single fact to support her false statements and her claims are distasteful.
Her attorneys are asking a judge to dismiss Guillard's counterclaims and award Scofield her attorney's fees.
Scofield now has a GoFundMe, organized by her friend and colleague, in order to help with costs associated with the lawsuit. As of Wednesday, her GoFundMe has raised $14,055.
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