Selfies and Shotguns: Why Wasn't TikTok Star Ava Majury Granted a Stalking Injunction?

by LegalFix
Posted: April 22, 2022

In 2021, popular TikToker Ava Majury caught the world’s attention when her father shot and killed a man she said was stalking her. He had allegedly arrived at their front door with ill intent and a shotgun, leading to a tense and ultimately deadly incident.

One year later, history seemed to be repeating itself when Majury sought an injunction against another person that she alleged was stalking and harassing her. Among other things, Majury said that this individual went to the same school, and she frequently noticed him trailing behind her.

But despite media attention and the precedent of her previous stalker, Majury’s case was dismissed — leaving her 1.2 million TikTok followers wondering why her request was denied and what it really takes to qualify for a stalking injunction.

How It All Started

In 2019, Ava Majury moved from New Jersey to Naples, Florida, with her parents and two siblings. The following year, in April 2020, Majury started a TikTok account on which she made lip-syncing and dancing videos. In just a year, Majury gained 1 million followers, of which 75% were male.

In addition to her TikTok account, Majury also began an Instagram account which gained 130,000 Instagram followers over the span of one month. As Majury’s following grew, she began receiving paid promotions from various brands, which earned her as much as $1,700 per paid promotional video on her main TikTok account.

Through her online presence, Majury interacted with a follower named EricJustin111, who has been identified as an 18-year-old man named Eric Rohan Justin. Majury would occasionally converse with him on Snapchat and Instagram, as she frequently did with other followers. Majury also stated that she sold Justin two selfies of her face for about $300, with the permission of her parents.

Majury’s interactions with Justin were brought to an abrupt halt when he began asking her for explicit images, at which point she blocked his accounts. However, the Majury family never considered Justin a threat to their safety until he flew from Elliot City, Maryland, to their home in Florida in July 2021.

Reportedly, Justin arrived at the Majury family home and used a shotgun to blow open the front door. At that point, his weapon jammed, and Ava’s father, Rob Majury — who is a retired police lieutenant — chased Justin from the premises. Shortly thereafter, Justin returned and attempted again to enter the home, and Rob Majury shot and killed him.

In 2005, Florida passed “Stand Your Ground” legislation, which says, “A person is justified in using or threatening to use deadly force if he or she reasonably believes that using or threatening to use such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another.” As a result, Rob Majury never faced prosecution for shooting Justin.

Although Ava Majury continued to post content on TikTok on the day following the shooting, she took a five-day break from posting videos.

Ava Majury Takes Another Alleged Stalker to Court

Less than a year later, Ava Majury’s parents chose to take her out of public school because another person was allegedly stalking her — a local boy who had been in contact with Justin before the shooting.

Majury began to suspect she was being stalked again in December 2021 and quickly informed her parents. The alleged stalker, who has not been named as a juvenile, posted Snapchat videos in which he was firing a gun at a shooting range. The videos unsettled Majury, causing her to leave school and enroll in distance learning out of fear for her safety.

Following these events, Majury’s parents filed a petition for a stalking injunction. The hearing took place in March 2022, at which Majury testified against her alleged stalker, stating that she was “terrified” because the stalker “was always behind” her at school.

Majury also claimed that the plaintiff was in communication with Justin before the shooting and had sent her screenshots of their conversations. One of the screenshots showed a text message from Justin that said, “I want to [emoji] her bro.” The emoji used was an icon of a grape. Majury explained that teens may use this emoji in place of the word “rape.”

However, after presenting all her evidence, Majury’s case was dismissed without any injunction against the accused.

Why Wasn’t Ava Majury Granted a Stalking Injunction?

During Majury’s hearing with the Collier County Judge, she testified about the plaintiff: “I was terrified. I took myself out of many things I loved. I modified my schedule. I took myself out of soccer midseason, so I could avoid being around him.”

Given the dramatic events that surrounded her first encounter with a stalker, people are wondering why Ava Majury wasn’t granted a stalking injunction the second time around.

Judge Kevin S. Cohen ruled that Majury could not use the Snapchat post by her classmate at the shooting range in court and that the post did not qualify as harassment because he did not send the post directly to her. Judge Cohen said, “Things like the video of him in the gun range undisputedly were not directed toward the petitioner and cannot be an act of stalking.”

Another fact Majury presented as evidence was the the accused’s continued contact with Justin until his death. But the defense argued the accused’s actions did not constitute stalking because he was sending information about Justin to Majury in order to warn her, and the conversation between him and Majury was voluntary.

Ultimately, Judge Cohen dismissed the injunction because the juvenile’s actions towards Ava Majury do not meet the legal requirements of stalking or harassment. “Although the court thinks it’s a good idea for the parties to remain separate and not have contact,” Cohen said, “I can’t enter an injunction to keep parties away from each other simply to keep the peace when they’re not able to behave civilly with each other.”

Although disappointed, the Majury family has made peace with the judge’s decision. “Although today didn’t go as I wanted it to, I’m glad I got my truth out, and my story was told,” Majury said.