Zach, 26, and Kaity, 28, who got engaged during the Monday, March 27, finale of the ABC show, stopped by the “Chicks In the Office” podcast on their Tuesday, March 28, press tour and watched an apology video from cohost Ria Ciuffo — who initially shared the theory on Friday, March 24.
“I have no idea if this is true. … It’s just something I’ve heard that apparently, no one else has heard,” Ria said via Instagram on Friday. “But apparently after Zach got engaged to one of the girls, who I believe to be Kaity, that engagement ended, and he is now with Jess. Jess is the one who loves Taylor Swift, she loves body glitter. She even posted a clip recently of them at the Women Tell All together. I don’t know how true this is. Do what you will with the information, OK? … It will be freaking crazy if it happens.”
On Tuesday, the couple told cohost Fran Mariano that they were thankful for the apology.
“It was out of [the blue],” Zach said. “I appreciate that she actually made a video and apologized because there’s so many crazy things that go on and people have all these conspiracies and this and that, but she owned up to it.”
Jess, 23, subsequently made a TikTok about the rumor set to the sound: “First of all, I’m glad you said that, I’m not 5’2. I’m 5’3.”
She wrote alongside the video: “I was rumored to be with WHO. First of all, I didn’t even get a date with the man. NEXT.”
Zach sent Jess packing during the February 27 episode of the ABC series. She told Us Weekly that same month that she was “blindsided” by their split.
“Throughout our journey, he always reassured me and validated me. He always told me everything’s gonna be OK and to just kind of hold out, hold on. So as time went on and I wasn’t getting that special quality time with him, I was definitely in my head of like, ‘What am I missing here? There’s nothing being communicated, that’s wrong,’” she explained. “So in a way, I saw it coming because it just wasn’t adding it up, but yeah, I definitely was blindsided still.”
Jess added that her exit was “frustrating” for both of her and Zach as she expressed her concerns about not receiving a one-on-one date yet.
“It wasn’t a good feeling to sit with because it was like, ‘Well, what could I have done better? What could I have said better? Should I have fought for him?’ But also, I want someone to fight for me. So it was a very weird place that we left off,” she said. “I think he’s an amazing guy. I think he was doing the best he could in the moment. I was doing the best that I could in the moment.”
She concluded at the time: “There was no right or wrong. He was speaking his truth. I was speaking mine the best that we could, so I was not ever upset with him. It was more of just, like, I wish we could have understood each other.”
Zach, for his part, told Us last month that he had a “very strong” and “fast” connection with Jess.
“I think it was the biggest crux or the biggest issue was, like, I wasn’t seeing the comfort from her, and the nerves were coming through, like, constantly week over week,” he said. “And I was, like, afraid of having a one-on-one and her not feeling comfortable when it’s a full day together and it’s really tough for her. And in reality, it was a total miscommunication where she would feel comfortable — more comfortable or more open if she had the one-on-one. I had frustration and she had frustration and we just missed each other. I really, really liked her and I had zero idea that she’d be going home [before that conversation].”
The Bachelor franchise will return with season 20 of The Bachelorette — starring Charity Lawson — on ABC Monday, June 26, at 9 p.m ET.