Victory For Sam Toll and The Storey Teller!
First District Judge James Wilson issued an order today in Lance Gilman’s defamation case against me (The Storey Teller founder Sam Toll). In his ruling, Judge Wilson granted my Anti-SLAPP* motion and ordered Storey County Commissioner and Mustang Ranch Brothel Owner Lance Gilman’s defamation complaint dismissed.
The case drew national attention from First Amendment and journalist advocacy groups who viewed my victory in the Nevada Supreme Court as a major step protecting the rights of journalists who report online.
In his decision, Judge Wilson wrote “There is no credible evidence that Toll published the resident communications with actual malice. The Court concludes Gilman has failed to show that his defamation claim against Toll has minimal merit. There is no credible evidence that Toll’s communications were not in good faith and in furtherance of the right to petition or the right to free speech in direct connection with an issue of public concern, and therefore it must be dismissed.”
In his order, Judge Wilson allows me to make an application to the court for reimbursement of reasonable attorney’s fees. Gilman has until June 29th to explain to the court why he should not pay me $10,000 in statutory damages as allowed by Nevada Revised Statute.
To the people who supported me throughout this ordeal in spirit and with their cash, I cannot thank you enough.
It’s Not Over Until It’s Over
Mr. Gilman is on the record saying he will appeal if he loses, so I know we’re not done.
However, I do feel as our nation must have felt on June 7th, 1944. While the war is not over today, the final outcome appears inevitable.
I will keep you apprised of new developments as they transpire.
*SLAPP stands for Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation. This term refers to lawsuits that are usually frivolous and filed by wealthy people or agencies to silence public dissent.
In this case, it didn’t work.Orrder Granting Anti-SLAPP MTD