Man sues dozens of women for making negative comments on Facebook dating group

(KTLA) – A Los Angeles man is suing over 50 women for negative posts they allegedly wrote about him on social media, claiming the messages are false and defamatory.

Stewart Lucas Murrey is accusing the women of defamation, sex-based discrimination, intentional infliction of emotional distress, libel, invasion of privacy and more.

The lawsuit stems from posts and comments the women are accused of writing in a Facebook group called "Are We Dating The Same Guy?"

The private group included members who share dating advice and warnings about men who are potentially harmful, dangerous or untrustworthy.

The group has specific, location-based pages for cities across the U.S. 

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Murrey alleges the women posted a variety of falsehoods about him, including that he is suspected of murder or involved in a murder case, that he has several domestic violence charges against him. He also claims they said he had tried to extort money from women he dated, that he had sexually transmitted diseases, and that he lied about being an attorney. 

Murrey claims all the allegations posted by the women on the group are completely false.

One of the defendants, Olivia Berger, said the majority of the 50-plus women Murrey is suing had not met him in person. She claimed some of the women named in the suit only made passing comments or reactions to posts about Murrey, or simply just “liked” a post about him.

Berger, however, was one of the few women who met Murrey in person for a date after matching with him on the dating app Tinder in 2021.

A group of defendants hold a press conference on March 20, 2024, addressing a lawsuit involving comments about a man made in a Facebook group called “Are We Dating The Same Guy?” (KTLA)

During their date, Berger claimed Murrey ranted about conspiracy theories and other topics and appeared “arrogant and smug.” Overall, she felt they weren’t very compatible based on a difference of opinions.

“It was the typical bad date behavior,” Berger said. "I want to emphasize that I had never had a date like this ever."

When she shared her experience on the Facebook group, she said her statements “were factual and they were based on our true experiences. He found those comments and decided to come forth with this lawsuit.”

According to the suit, Murrey attempted to join the Facebook group to defend himself but said he was consistently denied entry. 

Another defendant, Vanessa Valdes, said she connected with Murrey on the dating app Hinge.

“Right out of the gate, gave me his phone number and said, ‘Let’s hang,’” she recalled. “I commented with one message saying, ‘Bold move’ with a happy face and then a barrage of harassing messages came afterward. So I immediately blocked him and reported him.”

A few years later, Valdes commented on a post in the Facebook group about her experience with Murrey.

“I shared my personal experience, truthful, and my opinions on his behavior, and now, I’m being sued,” Valdes said. “It’s unfortunate that we’re here, but I’m happy to provide all the evidence and get through this. Hopefully, justice will prevail.”

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In a statement to KTLA, Murrey denied all allegations and comments made by the women.

“For years, key defendants obsessively tracked, stalked and incited harassment against me," he said, in part. "These are women with whom I had little to no interaction. In every case of interaction, I rejected each one of them and cut them off, quite swiftly. Instead of going their separate ways, they went on for months and years to spread misinformation about me and countless others. Their actions were deliberate, and now they are playing the victims.”

A court hearing was held on Tuesday in which the women defended themselves. They are currently seeking legal representation and hope the media attention on their case will bring the right attorneys to them.

Alison Triessl, a legal analyst for Nexstar's KTLA, said the women may have a case, but it depends on several elements. 

“If the claim is defamation, and the defense is that it’s the truth or was simply stated as an opinion, then there is no defamatory statement,” Triessl said.

Explaining more about the Facebook group, Valdez said, “It’s not about men versus women, it’s about truth versus fiction. This is a community, a place where women can share their honest experiences and keep each other safe. So while we’re doing that, we’re exercising our right to free speech and we feel this is a bullying tactic to silence us.”

In January, a Chicago man also filed a lawsuit against members of the "Are We Dating the Same Guy?" Facebook group in that city, also for defamation, USA Today reported.

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