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‘Jackie’ of debunked ‘Rolling Stone’ rape story resists court orders

by Leigh Egan

A former University of Virginia student and the subject of the debunked Rolling Stone article about a fabricated rape, was ordered on Monday to comply with all subpoenas and court orders after she met them with resistance.

The Daily Progress reports that “Jackie” writer  Sabrina Rubin Erdely, was behind the 9,000-word story, published in Rolling Stone magazine’s November 2014 issue. The now-retracted article depicted a girl named Jackie who claimed she was taken to a room by members of the University of Virginia’s  Phi Kappa Psi, where she was raped by numerous different frat members.

The piece sparked a frenzied outrage that garnered so much attention that the school’s administration suspended Greek life and all Greek life activities for the semester. As the article’s popularity grew, however, so did the public’s scrutiny of it. By April 2015, the backlash was so severe that Rolling Stone retracted the story. Charlottesville police investigated the incident and found no traces of evidence that the rape had ever occurred.

In the aftermath, Erdely was sued by three different parties for the chaos she created. The school’s administrator, Nicole Eramo, filed a defamation lawsuit, while three fraternity alumni filed their own defamation lawsuit shortly after. In November 2015, the UVA chapter of Phi Kappa Psi filed the third lawsuit against Erdely, claiming that her fake article made them become “the object of an avalanche of condemnation worldwide.”

Erdely has mostly remained quiet and out of the public eye, but with the latest subpoena, she filed numerous objections, stating that she shouldn’t have to provide the materials the court is asking for. Her requests were denied.

The lawsuit trial is slated to start on October 23.

[Feature Photo: AP/Steve Helber, File]

Leigh Egan is a crime-fighting journalist and editor who specializes in breaking news and investigative true crime coverage. With more than a decade of experience under her belt, Leigh’s work can be found in a number of high-profile national publications. For Leigh, learning didn’t stop after college. She considers herself a lifelong learner who frequently takes media and journalism courses to keep abreast of the latest happenings and innovations in her field.