Kelowna freelance reporter pleads not guilty

Tieja MacLaughlin in Benton County Superior Court Friday. - Kevin Uretsky KVEW TV - Contributed
Tieja MacLaughlin in Benton County Superior Court Friday.
— image credit: Kevin Uretsky KVEW TV - Contributed

Twenty-five-year-old Kelowna freelance reporter Tieja MacLaughlin pled not guilty in Benton County Superior Court Friday, according to KVEW TV in Kennewick, WA.

MacLaughlin was charged with felony harassment Thursday afternoon.

On its website, the news station reported MacLaughlin's bail was reduced from $50,000 to $10,000 and, as a condition of her release from jail, MacLaughlin had to sign a no contact order promising not to contact Jackson Playfair, 19.

She also had to surrender her passport and remain in the Benton/Franklin County area.

According to court documents, MacLaughlin threatened Playfair after learning he had cheated on her with another girl while in Spokane.

Playfair became concerned and contacted authorities after MacLaughlin indicated she was on her way to see him.

Officers met MacLaughlin at the Kennewick Super 8 and told her to go home. She told police she'd abide by their conditions, but later in the day Playfair contacted law enforcement and showed that MacLaughlin had sent another 20 to 25 messages.

MacLaughlin was arrested Saturday morning and was held in jail for six days.

MacLaughlin's LinkedIn account lists her as an employee of both Castanet and Shaw TV. She has also worked for the Kelowna Daily Courier.

According to KVEW TV, MacLaughlin is due back in court Feb. 12; her trial is scheduled for March 10.


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