Entertainment

Judge Reopens Lawsuit Against The Washington Post For Defamation By Teen Nick Sandmann

Federal U.S. District Judge William Bertelsman has reopened Covington Catholic student, Nick Sandmann’s, $250 million defamation case against The Washington Post. Judge Bertelsman had dismissed the suit in July but is now allowing a discovery process in regards to three of the 33 libel claims against The Washington Post. Additionally, a separate multimillion-dollar claim filed against CNN has been granted discovery.

As you may recall, The Washington Post reported a January 18 incident during which Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann and Omaha Nation elder Nathan Phillips were recorded in a standoff at the Lincoln Memorial Stairs. Now, Judge Bertelsman is allowing Sandmann’s legal team to access The Washington Post’s documents at the time as they pertain to alleged defamatory statements about Sandmann “blocking” Phillips from exiting the confrontation.

Nick Sandmann is claiming that he was falsely labeled a racist and vilified by The Washington Post and other press.

Credit: @TruNorthReports / Twitter

Sandmann and his fellow Covington Catholic peers were demonstrating at the annual anti-abortion March for Life protest, all donning Make America Great Again hats. Nathan Phillips was participating in the Indigenous Peoples March. Viral footage showed Phillips singing and playing a drum face-to-face with Sandmann, who is seen smiling. His peers, also plaintiffs in the case, are shown in the background, jeering and laughing. 

As the story quelled to a national platform for debate, new footage was unearthed that showed Phillips, in fact, approached Sandmann. The suit claims that The Post ‘bullied’ the plaintiffs to further an alleged ‘anti-Trump agenda.’

At first, Judge Bertelsman dismissed the suit on grounds of First Amendment protections of the press.

Credit: @weareinformed / Twitter

“Few principles of law are as well-established as the rule that statements of opinion are not actionable in libel actions,” Bertelsman initially said in his 36-page judgment last week. The First Amendment protects opinions printed in the press. Phillips had told The Washington Post that he was blocked from passing, and The Washington Post claims it was simply relaying Phillips’ opinion alongside Sandmann’s. Still, Sandmann’s legal team has cited three Twitter posts and seven articles that they deem ‘defamatory’ to their plaintiffs.

Sandmann has become the martyr of the right’s perceived war against #FakeNews, as instigated by President Trump.

Credit: @realDonaldTrump / Twitter

When Sandmann initially filed suit, the President of the United States tweeted, “Covington student suing WAPO. Go get them Nick. Fake News!” Just today, Trump applauded the judge’s decision and denounced “the thoroughly disgusting Washington Post (which is no longer available at the White House!).” His tweet has been liked 84k times with over 21k retweets, many of which come with comments like, “That is excellent news in the fight against #FakeNewsMedia outlets that set out to destroy innocent people’s lives. I hope that Nick wins millions of dollars.”

“This is a huge win,” tweeted attorney Todd McMurtry. “Now #NickSandmann will be able to start discovery and find out exactly what the reporters were thinking when they attacked Nicholas and the #CovingtonCatholic kids.”

The new decision is likely to reopen a string of other suits in Sandmann’s favor and has already opened a case against CNN.

Credit: @SteveGuidetti / Twitter

A week after The Washington Post suit was filed, McMurty filed multimillion-dollar suits against CNN and NBC. Today, the court released a new motion that grants discovery in the case against CNN. “As in the Washington Post case,” court documents read, “the Court believes that discovery is necessary to determine what happened in the unfortunate events which give rise to this litigation, and, to determine whether defendant accurately reported them, and, if it failed to do so, whether the failure was due to negligence or malice.”

Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren and CNN correspondent Ana Navarro are also implicated in a separate suit that would grant Sandmann up to $600,000.

Credit: @ananavarro / Twitter

The eight students are listed anonymously and claim that Warren and Navarro, along with ten other defendants, defamed their character and erroneously caused harm to their reputation and lives. In a tweet the following day, Navarro actually came to the defense of Sandmann, tweeting, “Some see it differently & yes, it’s complicated. I think the kid was obnoxious as hell & got into Native American elder’s face. But come on. For God’s sake. It’s Martin Luther King Day. Nobody -specially some kid not old enough to grow a beard- should get death threats. Stop.”

The defendants in the suit also include activist Shaun King, US Representative Deb Haaland, comedian Kathy Griffin, ABC News political analyst Matthew Dowd, Mother Jones Editor-in-Chief Clara Jefferey, Rewire Editor-in-Chief Jodi Jacobson, Kentucky entrepreneur Adam Edelen, and former CNN correspondent Reza Aslan.

READ: The President Tried Making Vulgarity Mainstream With An Attack Against Mitt Romney But Ana Navarro Had Time To Play

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Vanessa Bryant Suing Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Over Leaked Photos Of Kobe And Gianna

Entertainment

Vanessa Bryant Suing Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Over Leaked Photos Of Kobe And Gianna

kobebryant / lacosheriff / Instagram

Vanessa Bryant filed a lawsuit against the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department alleging violation of privacy. The lawsuit stems from behavior by the officers at the scene of her husband and daughter’s death.

Vanessa Bryant is suing the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

On Jan. 26, a helicopter carrying Kobe and Gianna Bryant, Payton and Sarah Chester, Alyssa, Keri, and John Altobelli, Christina Mauser, and pilot Ara Zobayan crashed in the Calabasas hills. The sudden death devastated those who knew Kobe and the city of Los Angeles that mourned his death for months after.

Vanessa was shocked to hear that the sheriff deputies took photos of her husband’s and daughter’s bodies at the crash site.

“This lawsuit is about accountability and about preventing this disgraceful behavior from happening to other families in the future who have suffered loss,” Vanessa’s attorney, Luis Li, said in a statement. “The department formally refused Mrs. Bryant’s requests for information, saying it was ‘unable to assist’ with any inquiry and had no legal obligation to do so. It’s now for a court to tell the department what its obligations are.”

Bryant is suing the department claiming damages for emotional distress, negligence, and invasion of privacy.

Kobe fans are upset with the LACSD and the allegations that the deputies took these photos.

According to TMZ, Sheriff Alex Villanueva knew about the photos taken by eight deputies and shared within the department. They were also shared in the Lost Hills Sheriff’s substation. Sheriff Villanueva told the deputies to delete the photos from their phones and felt confident they did so.

A trainee allegedly shared the photos with a woman in a bar.

A witness to the event said that a trainee took out his phone and showed a woman the photos to impress her. The bartender overheard the conversation and filed an online complaint about the trainee and their behavior with the photos. The trainee showed the woman the photos a few days after the crash leading many to believe that the sheriff’s department was fully aware of the photos.

Kobe fans are standing behind Vanessa as she follows through with her lawsuit.

Reports state that the sheriff’s department told deputies to delete the images to avoid disciplinary action. The coverup is sparking outrage by Kobe fans who are angered that the department did not do enough to protect the dignity and privacy of all of the victims of the crash.

Mitú will update this story as it continues to develop.

READ: Vanessa Bryant Forced To Respond To ‘Beyond Hurtful’ Comments Made By Her Own Mom On ‘El Gordo y La Flaca’

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Cardi B And Sister Sued Over Video Claiming To Show ‘Racist MAGA Supporters’

Entertainment

Cardi B And Sister Sued Over Video Claiming To Show ‘Racist MAGA Supporters’

iamcardib / Instagram / @iamcardib / Twitter

Cardi B and her sister are being sued for defamation of character after a viral video taken by Hennessy Carolina Almánzar. The video shows two men, one wearing a MAGA hat, and one woman telling Hennessy to move her car, which is parked on the beach.

Earlier this month, Cardi B shared a video taken by her sister showing a confrontation over where a car was parked.

Cardi B, who is notorious for having widely broadcast Twitter feuds with people, posted the video in response to a tweet from Candace Owens. Owens is a controversial conservative figure whose brand is all about shock and awe. Owens famously said she thinks it would be okay if “Hitler just wanted to make Germany great and have things run well.”

Immediately, there was skepticism about the incident since the video starts during the confrontation.

Responding to nay-sayers, Cardi B shared a video of her sisters voice messages sent to her IG DMs. Hennessy claims in the messages that the white men were the aggressors against her and her girlfriend while they were on the beach.

The videos did not convince some people that her sister wasn’t in the wrong.

Cardi B’s tweet is filled with responses questioning the video and denying its authenticity. The argument immediately turned political because of the mention of Trump and Trump supporters. The conversation on Twitter is divided among people who believe Cardi B and her sister and those who don’t.

Now, Cardi B and Hennessy are being sued by the beachgoers in the video.

“These peaceful Suffolk County residents were quietly enjoying a Sunday at the Smith Point beach with their families, when rap celebrity Hennessy Carolina suddenly approached them, raging, spitting, insulting, assaulting, defaming and threatening them, all the while videotaping them because one of them wore a MAGA hat,” beachgoers’ Miller Place attorney John Ray said, according to ABC7NYC.

The lawsuit claims defamation of character because of the language used in the video against them.

According to Billboard, plaintiffs Peter Caliendo, Pauline Caliendo, and Manuel Alarcon claim that they had approached Hennessy and her girlfriend, Michelle Diaz, blocked them in with how she parked her car. The lawsuit states that the men asked for Diaz to move her car and that’s when Hennessy started to record the video and hurl names and insults at them.

This story is developing and mitú will be updating as the story unfolds.

READ: Cardi B Is, Once Again, Fed Up With Trolls Trying to Body Shame Her With Edited Photos

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