|Judge Smith at his other job|
In various Internet outlets, Mezzacappa has made specific claims of assault, animal abuse, stalking, pedophilia and even tax fraud. I filed suit in April, and Mezzacappa asked the Court to toss the complaint. Judge Smith refused.
She tried to claim that her defamation was just her opinion. Judge Smith disagreed. "Contrary to Mezzacappa's contention, these statements do not merely appear to be expressions of non-actionable opinion. Instead, these statements not only appear to be defamatory, they appear to be defamatory per se."
Judge Smith also rejected Mezzacappa's claim that she was merely exercising a First Amendment right to raise matters of public concern. "[W]e cannot agree with Mezzacappa that all of the contested statements in this case raise matters of public concern as the overwhelming majority of the statements involve O'Hare's interaction with Mezzacappa, her property, and her pig."
Attorney Richard Orloski represents me in this matter.
Here is a scanned copy of Judge Smith's Opinion, which presents a great guide to the balance between First Amendment protected speech and online defamation.
Updated Friday, 9 PM.