HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- They are marketed as lifesavers when locating lost keys or phones, but a new class-action lawsuit claims tracking devices made by Tile, Inc. are being used for stalking and that the company was aware of the danger.
"I will forever not be at peace," Stephanie Ireland-Gordy said.
In 2018, ABC13 profiled her case and did not identify her because she was afraid for her safety. Five years later, she and her partner are the lead plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit.
ORIGINAL STORY: Houston woman says ex used 'Tile' device to stalk her repeatedly
"I just think it was the right thing to do," she said. "I don't know how else to get the message across."
Ireland-Gordy said she and her partner discovered the Tile device hidden in the middle console of her Jeep in March of 2017, after months of her ex following them, damaging their property, and mysteriously showing up where they were.
A criminal prosecution fizzled due to Tile's lack of cooperation with law enforcement, Ireland-Gordy said, but data obtained during civil litigation revealed her ex pinged the Tile 16,385 times, according to the lawsuit filed in California last week.
Ireland-Gordy and her partner are suing Tile, its owner, Life360, and Amazon, which partners with Tile to integrate technologies. They claim the companies marketed the tracking devices for stalking and were aware of the dangers but ignored them for years.
"It's a cheap, easy-to-acquire product that makes it the tool of choice for stalkers and abusers around the world to stalk their victims," Gillian Wade, one of the plaintiffs' attorneys, said. "There are ways this could be safer, and they know it's a problem. They know this is happening. They specifically marketed it for that purpose."
Life360 sent a statement to ABC that read in part:
Life360 remains committed to the safety and privacy of our users. Using a Tile to track someone's location without their knowledge is against our terms of service, and we do not condone the use of our technology in this manner. Collaboration with law enforcement in cases of misuse is a priority, and we actively work to ensure perpetrators are brought to justice. We have never received a law enforcement report of misuse of our Anti-Theft Mode, and we are confident our system of deterring bad actors is working as intended.
ABC13 reached out to Amazon for a response but has not received a response.