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Home Technology Heather Wyatt’s TikTok posts about daughter’s loss of life spark authorized battle

Heather Wyatt’s TikTok posts about daughter’s loss of life spark authorized battle

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A decide has ordered a Mississippi girl who says her daughter was bullied to loss of life to close down her social media accounts, as a small-town tragedy balloons into a web-based drama with hundreds of thousands of onlookers.

After 13-year-old Aubreigh Wyatt died by suicide in September 2023, her grieving mom, Heather Wyatt, started posting about her loss of life on TikTok, attracting a whole bunch of 1000’s of followers. Heather Wyatt attributed her daughter’s loss of life to bullying, each on-line and offline, by the hands of schoolmates in Ocean Springs, Miss., close to Biloxi.

Although Wyatt didn’t identify the 4 teenagers she accused of bullying her daughter, their names and different details about them rapidly surfaced within the replies to her posts, in addition to in different TikTok and Fb posts by her followers and supporters. Now the households of these 4 teenagers say they’re those being subjected to a vicious marketing campaign of harassment and threats, they usually’ve sued Wyatt for defamation and slander.

The saga is taking part in out on-line earlier than an viewers that reaches far past the 20,000 residents of Ocean Springs, illustrating how TikTok can put a nationwide highlight on an area tragedy in ways in which complicate the lives of these concerned. The case pits a grief-stricken mom’s proper to talk out in opposition to the privateness and security of the teenagers she blames for her daughter’s loss of life.

On July 1, a decide in Jackson County Chancery Court docket granted an emergency injunction requiring Wyatt to briefly shut down her TikTok, Fb and different social media accounts “to guard the minor youngsters on this case.” The order was leaked and circulated extensively on-line regardless of the court docket ordering all information sealed, as earlier reported by the Biloxi Solar-Herald.

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Outraged supporters of Wyatt have posted TikTok movies protesting her “silencing,” a few of which have been seen a whole bunch of 1000’s of instances. The decide is scheduled to assessment the order in a listening to subsequent week.

That case is separate from the defamation lawsuit in opposition to Wyatt, which the 4 teenagers’ households filed on July 2 within the county’s circuit court docket. They are saying Wyatt in her TikTok movies invited her followers to study and reveal the names of the 4 teenagers, even after investigations by native police and a youth court docket discovered no proof that they had been accountable for Aubreigh Wyatt’s loss of life.

In a single significantly emotional video, Wyatt confirmed herself stumbling on her daughter’s suicide notes to family members months after her loss of life. The household had beforehand thought Aubreigh didn’t go away a notice.

Some TikTok movies in regards to the case, which frequently embody hashtags corresponding to #LLAW (for Dwell like Aubreigh Wyatt), have hundreds of thousands of likes and tens of hundreds of thousands of views on the platform.

Wyatt has began a GoFundMe for her authorized bills, bringing in additional than $95,000 from almost 4,000 donors as of Wednesday afternoon. She didn’t reply to requests for remark Wednesday, and an legal professional representing her declined to remark.

Wyatt has mentioned in TikTok movies that her purpose is to shine a lightweight on teen psychological well being points. The plaintiffs accuse her of attempting to capitalize on the state of affairs for “clicks,” to develop her social media following and usher in income.

Patrick Guild, the plaintiffs’ legal professional, mentioned he couldn’t touch upon the decide’s order as a result of the case was sealed by court docket order, including that he was dissatisfied to see it posted on social media.

“What has occurred because of that’s that plenty of totally different theories, and I’ll say, false data has come out” as to the explanations for the order, Guild mentioned. He added that the accusations of bullying by his shoppers are “patently false” however have been “elevated to such a grand scale based mostly on Heather Wyatt’s variety of followers.”

“Consequently, my shoppers have been receiving threats that in my view might be construed as actual issues for his or her security,” he mentioned.

Razzan Nakhlawi contributed to this report.

For those who or somebody you realize wants assist, go to 988lifeline.org or name or textual content the Suicide & Disaster Lifeline at 988.



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