The heroine became aware of an impending disaster and strenuously attempted to warn the people in charge, only to be brushed aside. This is TheCassandra's lot in life, and she's resigned to it by now. Doom arrives, exactly as she foretold, and while she's scavenging through the ashes for what's left of her belongings, the authorities arrive. Oh, what an unexpected twist; they've realized they made a mistake and they've come to apolo--

Wait, they're here to ''arrest'' her?!

That's right, ladies and gentlemen. When an ObstructiveBureaucrat or a FascistButInefficient government fail to heed Cassandra, they can add insult to injury by blaming the whole disaster on her. Since this catastrophe was [[InternalRetcon entirely unpredictable]], there's only one logical explanation: she did it, and we can make everything right if we just get rid of her.

As idiotic as this kind of reasoning sounds, it is possible to use it in such a way that's not completely stupid. TheUnintelligible may have shown up for the sole purpose of warning us about the catastrophe, but if we can't understand him, well, blaming him for the problem makes as much sense as anything else. Additionally, once Cassandra has been revealed as knowing something, the idea that she's an accomplice is plausible -- although, since she's trying to warn you, treating her like a criminal is still pretty dumb. However, with certain subjects, or when the listener is in a certain frame of mind, their warning may be taken as a threat.

This is particularly likely if both the disaster itself ''and'' Cassandra's ability to predict it are SufficientlyAdvanced to seem supernatural (or if they really ''are'' supernatural); the instinctive conclusion is that the two incomprehensible things are directly connected. This is the kind of logic that gets [[BurnTheWitch wise women]] and {{Plague Doctor}}s hounded out of town, wrongly accused of causing what they tried to fix.

It may go without saying, but this shows up commonly in RealLife, particularly in regards to TheWarOnStraw.

A possible outcome of a CassandraTruth, as well as a potential fate of the IgnoredExpert. Related to ShootTheMessenger and HeroWithBadPublicity.

[[AC:Anime and Manga]]
* A villain in ''Anime/DragonBallGT'' twisted this to his advantage, threatening a village by claiming to be able to create earthquakes, when in reality he was just predicting ones that were going to happen anyway.
* The ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' Absol is considered a bad omen, because it is only ever seen before disasters strike. It's even referred to as the Disaster Pokémon. The truth is it has the power to predict disasters and is trying to warn people.
** This happens to an Elgyem in episode 33 of ''{{Anime/Pokemon}}: Best Wishes''.
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'': When [[BadassGrandpa Yamamoto]] confronts [[MadScientist Mayuri]] about the steps Mayuri's taken to counter the [[PuttingOnTheReich Vandenreich's]] potentially world-unbalancing activities, he briefly tries to pin the blame for the extent of the problem on Mayuri and his division's competence level. Mayuri retaliates by [[TheReasonYouSuckSpeech pointing out]] the only one to blame is Yamamoto himself for ignoring Mayuri's CassandraTruth two years beforehand as paranoia when it was Yamamoto's own fault for not killing the cause of the problem years ago. Yamamoto's forced to back down.
* ''Manga/{{Monster}}'': [[InspectorJavert Inspector Lunge]] outright refuses to believe [[TheHero Dr. Tenma's]] story that a ten year old boy could have possibly committed multiple homicides, believing instead that Tenma is the real killer. He goes through various revisions to his theory starting with the Johan story being a poor attempt on Tenma's part to feign innocence, up to "Johan" being the [[JekyllAndHyde good doctor's murderous]] SplitPersonality. [[spoiler: He figures out the truth eventually, but by then there's already a massive body count.]]
* In ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'', [[spoiler: Homura keeps trying to warn characters about the future, but they won't believe her warnings. When this future does eventually come true, Kyubey insinuates that the tragedy of it is actually all her fault, because it was her trying to warn everyone about the consequences that made said consequences even worse. Homura effectively turns the situation from "her friend dying" to "her friend becoming evil and so powerful the entire world is destroyed." This applies to timelines 1-4, in which Homura keeps making things worse; timelines 5 and 6 change everything]] Subtly subverted because [[spoiler:it's implied that the events actually ''were'' in a way, TheCassandra's fault, rather than this being a scapegoat situation]].

[[AC:Comic Books]]
* In volume 5 of ''Comicbook/{{Empowered}}'', the Superhomies (especially Major Havoc) blame Emp for the trouble [[spoiler:Fleshmaster / dWARf!]] caused at the Capeys, since she "so obviously" could never win a fight against a supervillain on her own and must have planned it and may even be a closeted villain herself. The telepath Mindfuck reads Emp's mind and sides with Emp, but Havoc doubts Mindfuck's abilities and still thinks Emp had something to do with it and issued a gag order on all public discussions on the matter, leaving Emp unable to defend herself publicly against the already-started rumors.
* This happens to Dusk in the Creator/DCComics CrisisCrossover ''ComicBook/FinalNight''. She arrived on Earth and announced the Sun was going to get eaten. The Sun was then eaten. Obviously her fault.
* ''The Last Warring Angel'' starts with the FBI questioning a man who tried to assasinate the president. The man informs them that he wasn't trying to kill the president, but his EvilChancellor who's going to manipulate the U.S. into World War 3 after North Korea nukes Seoul. He's treated as a madman at first, and a North Korean spy once Seoul indeed gets nuked.

* This is one AlternativeCharacterInterpretation concerning the Mothman, which appears in fiction in ''Film/TheMothmanProphecies''.
* A lot of the conflict of ''Film/TheFrighteners'' arises when people who think Frank is a complete fraud (rather than just running a MonsterProtectionRacket) interpret his warnings as threats.
* Happens to the protagonist of Werner Herzog's ''Film/HeartOfGlass'', the clairvoyant cowherd Hias. When, true to Hias' prophecies, the local glass factory burns down, the townsfolk blame it on him, beat him up and turn him in to the authorities.
* In ''Film/TheCabinetOfDrCaligari'', the circus prophet Cesare foresees that Allan will die at dawn. Cesare then kills Allan in his sleep. [[spoiler: The ending implies that Allan was actually murdered by the film's UnreliableNarrator, Francis.]]
* This becomes an InvokedTrope in ''An Enemy of the People'' (1978) when the protagonist is framed to look as if his objection to a tannery that was poisoning the town's water is a stock swindle.

* An old Myth/PaulBunyan tall tale has the logger stumble across a pair of mysterious whimpering shoes. Sometime after it whimpers, something incredibly strange happens, such as it raining upside-down. The other lumberjacks demand the Paul get rid of the shoe (sort of hard to blame them since stuff this [[WeirdnessMagnet weird]] only happened right after Paul found the shoe), but Paul, realizing the shoe's value, keeps them hidden away, only bringing them out when he was playing poker with lumberjacks who wouldn't recognize them.

* According to the ''Literature/FantasticBeastsAndWhereToFindThem'' book that was released for charity, Auguries in ''Literature/HarryPotter'' are feared because they're said to prophesise death. [[spoiler: They really cry in advance of bad weather.]]
* This happens in ''Literature/ThePassage'' when Amy shows up at Jaxon's village.
* Turns out to be a major problem for precognizants in the early years of Creator/AnneMcCaffrey's Talents series, as depicted in ''Literature/ToRidePegasus''. When something goes wrong and there's nobody else to sue, the litigious go for precogs on the theory that they could have got the warning out sooner. Eventually, it becomes a big enough problem that they have to go to the legislature for shield laws.
* Janet Lunn's novel ''Shadow In Hawthorn Bay'' features a Scottish protagonist named Mairi who has the gift of second sight. She has a vision of frozen gardens and says, "There will no summer next year." The other people in her Upper Canada settlement don't believe her. When the area suffers an [[ unseasonably cold and wet summer]], the settlers decide that since Mairi knew about the strange weather beforehand, she must have caused it.
* In ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'', some people will occasionally try to invoke this on Gandalf, since he only tends to show up when things are about to get bad. This usually leads to Gandalf sarcastically asking if they'd rather forgo his help in the face of great danger.
-->'''Wormtongue''': Late is the hour in which this conjurer chooses to appear. "''Lathspell''" I name you: ill news, and an ill guest!

[[AC:Live-Action TV]]
* Often happens to Gary when he tries to fix the next day's events that he read about in the ''Series/EarlyEdition''. In a multi-parter episode, he's saddled with a murder charge, a newspaper wrong about the time of death, and ''someone with access to the evidence room deliberately tampering with it to frame him''.
* According to the eponymous detective of the BBC series ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'', certain members of the London Metropolitan Police have assumed that the self-proclaimed sociopath demonstrating extensive knowledge of the crime and attempting to insert himself into the investigation must be the killer. [[StealthPun No kidding?]]
* This set in motion the plot of ''Series/{{Psych}}''. Main character Shawn was trained to be hyper-observant by his father, in hopes that he would follow in his footsteps and become a police detective. Unfortunately, Shawn goes through a rebellious streak and instead takes on a plethora of odd jobs while occasionally using his skills to solve crimes based on mere minutes of news footage. The police refuse to believe Shawn could really be ''that'' good an amateur sleuth, and decide he was actually right all of those times because he's a criminal in the know. So Shawn claims that he's really psychic, then uses a number of things he's already noticed to correctly deduce information about his interrogators. The chief realizes he's a useful tool, and by the end of the episode, Shawn's set up a fake psychic detective agency called Psych.
* In ''Series/DoctorWho'', more than once, the Doctor has been blamed for bringing about whatever catastrophe of the week he's there to save everyone from, despite them having ignored his warnings about it. InUniverse, he's gained something of a reputation as a herald of doom, given that he nearly always shows up on the heels of disaster and a ridiculously high body count is likely to follow. Never mind that if he ''weren't'' there, many planets and indeed the whole of reality would have been obliterated several times over. To some extent, this is his fault, as he rarely accepts credit or reward for his actions and prefers to remain anonymous to the universe at large, guaranteeing that he will be ShroudedInMyth.
* A variation occurs in ''Series/LawAndOrderSpecialVictimsUnit'', when a "psychic" shows up to help the detectives find a girl who's been kidnapped and raped. He tells the team that she's beneath running water; later on, they find her body underneath water pipes. Stabler, being [[CowboyCop who he is]], immediately suspects that the psychic was somehow responsible. [[spoiler: He was.]]
* Another twist on the trope from an episode of ''Series/DeathInParadise''. An old woman psychic prophesies her own death - [[Main/LargeHam "I am to be MURDERED!!"]], and gives a detailed description of the killer in front of an audience including some police officers. The next day she is found dead from poison owned by her former son-in-law, who exactly fits the description, and whose wife mysteriously vanished some time ago. The solution, to the amazement of anyone not paying attention was [[spoiler:Suicide, so she could frame her daughter's murderer.]]
* The Music/IronMaiden song "The Prophecy".

[[AC:Religious Works]]
* This can be found in the [[Literature/TheBible Book of Jeremiah]], making it OlderThanFeudalism. Jeremiah had spent the last years of the kingdom of Judah warning about the exile that the Judeans will go through if they continue worshiping pagan gods. Then the exile happens, and the people blame Jeremiah's crowd stopping the worship of the pagan gods as the reason for the exile! Jeremiah 44:17-18:
-->'''Judean pagan worshippers in Pathros''': "On the contrary, we will do everything we have vowed - to make offerings to the Queen of Heaven and to pour libations to her, as we used to do, we and our fathers, our kings and our officials, in the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem. For then we had plenty to eat, we were well off, and suffered no misfortune. But ever since we stopped making offerings to the Queen of Heaven and pouring libations to her, we have lacked everything, and we have been consumed by the sword and by famine!"

[[AC: Video Games]]
* In ''Franchise/DragonAge'', it's heavily implied that Teyrn Loghain believed that the Wardens were lying about the Blight to gain power and influence over the idealistic King Cailan, allowing them to mass Orlesian Wardens and forces in Ferelden to enact a military coup. Thus, his decision to quit the field at the Battle of Ostagar, sacrifice the King and leave half the army to perish at the hands of the Darkspawn was entirely justified, as it eliminated a major threat to the realm. Unfortunately, he was utterly ''wrong'' and his actions plunge Ferelden into a Civil War, leaving the Blight to grow unchecked.
** And, of course, leaving Ferelden greatly weakened so that Orlais might be able to sweep in ''anyway'', even if Loghain hadn't had the Blight to deal with. After all, ''half'' of the standing military force had just been sacrificed.
* In the ''Website/{{Neopets}}'' plot "The Curse of Maraqua", two sisters with the gift of foresight deal with this trope. The first sister, who sees happy events in her dreams, is lauded and welcomed; the other, who sees bad events in her nightmares, is feared and shunned.
* The {{Franchise/Pokemon}} Absol gets this treatment, [[AllThereInTheManual according to its 'dex entries]]. They have a natural ability to sense disaster, and a natural desire to warn humans of it -- but they [[PokemonSpeak can't communicate effectively with humans]], and so are believed to be the cause of the disaster when it does arrive.

* In a ''Film/{{Jaws}}'' parody storyline in ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'', Der Trihs tells the authorities that a shark is behind the killings, but they don't believe him because [[MisplacedWildlife sharks aren't native to that world]]. He sarcastically suggests that it must have been a stealth submarine with a shark-jaw mechanism, and they immediately decide that Der Trihs is responsible, and it was ''his'' stealth shark-submarine, and arrest him. Even when the MadScientist who created the sharks confesses, the police are convinced that he was Der Trihs's co-conspirator.

[[AC:Western Animation]]
* Parodied on TheSimpsons.
-->'''Moe''': ''[in response to a near-miss meteor strike]'' Let's burn down the observatory, so this can never happen again!
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'', "Bridle Gossip": Twilight and friends confront Zecora, a mysterious zebra who lives in [[TheLostWoods the Everfree Forest]] and whom everyone suspects of being a witch. Zecora departs into the woods with a cryptic warning about "those leaves of blue" the ponies are standing near, which the other ponies assume is some kind of curse. Sure enough, [[ScrewballSerum a weird affliction]] strikes the ponies the next day, and guess who they blame? Naturally, Zecora has nothing to do with their condition, and it turned out to be the fault of the blue-leaved plants they were walking through earlier, which are actually a magical plant called [[JustForPun "poison joke"]].
* Pretty much every episode of ''WesternAnimation/KidVsKat''.
* The WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes short ''Scardey Cat'' sees Porky Pig moving in to an old house with Sylvester as his pet cat. Sylvester quickly finds out that the mice infesting the house are trying to kill them. He proceeds to spend the night alternately trying to warn Porky and trying to foil the murder attempts. Unfortunately foiling those wound up making it look like Sylvester was trying to kill him.

[[AC:Real Life]]
* This is the main reason the Good Samaritan Law exists to protect people from such accusations.
* This is frequently invoked in politics. [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgment That's all we need to say.]]
* When Hitler's forces invaded the Soviet Union, the authorities [[ThisCannotBe refused to believe it]], insisting the reports were a trick to start a war. Two air force pilots flew off to investigate and confirmed that German troops were advancing well into Soviet territory, only to be arrested for spreading disinformation on their return. They were later court-martialed, despite having been right all along.