A wedding videographer is being called "heartless" after threatening a lawsuit and refusing to refund a client whose fiancée died just months before their wedding. Justin Montney lost his bride-to-be, 22-year-old Alexis Wyatt, in a fatal February car crash in Colorado Springs, Colorado. After her passing, he reached out to Copper Stallion Media, the videographer they had hired, seeking a refund of their $1,800 deposit considering the company "didn't render any services," leading to a months-long battle in which the videography company mocked Montney during his time of grief.
According to KRDO-TV, the Texas-based wedding videography and photography company refused to offer a refund, as the deposit was non-refundable. Instead, the company offered to extend his service to his next wedding, which Montney said "was a very insensitive thing to tell me." Per CBS News, on the company's website, Copper Stallion Media explained that Montney "kept emailing us trying to get a refund and we kept reiterating that the contract is non-refundable" and they "eventually stopped responding since the issue was moot." The company eventually threatened a lawsuit for defamation after Montney and his family left a bad review on the wedding planning website The Knot.
That threat prompted Montney to reach out to news outlet, telling KRDO that "at first I was just going to tell friends and family, but when he started to threaten Alexis's family with a lawsuit for basically their daughter dying, that's when I was like, 'OK, I'm going to start going to the people who spread the news." As more people began leaving negative comments, Copper Stallion Media launched another retaliatory measure, which Montney described as a "smear campaign": redirecting its website and Yelp page to a new website JustinMontney.com.
While much of the website's content has been removed, ABC News 7 reports that a message once accused Montney of trying to "shake us down" and said that "he admits the contract was nonrefundable but says we should give the money back due to the circumstance. Life is a b–, Justin." The message also reportedly mocked that the website is registered for two years using the non-refundable deposit.
They deleted their page, but not before making complete asses of themselves :)— big anime tinnitus (@alyssughjo) May 23, 2020
We can all agree fuck Copper Stallion Media. I don’t know a single photographer with morals that would act like this. pic.twitter.com/6prfAWVj3q
On May 23, the day on which Montney and Wyatt were set to marry, the company shared a photo of the couple. Captioning the image, they wrote that "today would have been the day where we would have filmed Justin and Alexis' wedding" and added, "after what Justin pulled with the media stunt to try and shake us down for a refund we hope you sob and cry all day for what would have been your wedding day."
At this time, Copper Stallion Media has not replied to requests for comment. The company’s Instagram page is now private and its Facebook page appears to be disabled. Wyatt’s family has since created a GoFundMe page to create a memorial.