Pettit Kohn Granted Anti-SLAPP Motion in Defamation Case

Pettit Kohn Ingrassia Lutz & Dolin shareholder Andrew O. Smith and associate Katherine Sample recently won the complete dismissal of a defamation lawsuit in the Riverside County Superior Court, Palm Springs Courthouse.  Pettit Kohn’s client, a church leadership group, was sued for defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Plaintiff alleged that the defendants made defamatory statements about him regarding sexual misconduct, and were attempting to discredit his reputation within the church.  Pettit Kohn’s clients denied making any defamatory statements, and were simply investigating reports of inappropriate behavior brought to their attention by a member of the congregation, as well as what they had personally observed.

Pettit Kohn responded with an anti-SLAPP motion, and successfully argued that the allegations arose from their client’s right to free speech as protected by the First Amendment.  The court ordered the dismissal of the plaintiff’s lawsuit, and Pettit Kohn was able to recover over $13,000 in attorney’s fees and costs on behalf of their clients.   Mr. Smith and Ms. Sample’s expertise and efficient handling of the case allowed for the quick dismissal, thus preventing Pettit Kohn’s clients from suffering any further emotional or financial damages.

“We are so grateful to you and to everyone involved in this process,” said the clients who were thrilled with the outcome.  “A special shout out to Katherine for her excellent work in working through the anti-SLAPP papers.  Thank you all for your hard work and excellence in this.  Everyone in your organization has been nothing but kind, helpful, and professional.”

About Pettit Kohn Ingrassia Lutz & Dolin

Pettit Kohn Ingrassia Lutz & Dolin PC is a leading AV-rated law firm with expertise in litigating and resolving civil matters in both state and federal courts.  The firm represents clients in the areas of Appellate, Business Litigation, Civil & Trial Litigation, Employment & Labor, Personal Injury, Product Liability, Professional Liability, Real Estate Litigation, Restaurant & Hospitality, Retail, Transactional & Business Services, and Transportation. Clients include large and mid-sized corporations, privately held businesses, institutions and individuals.  Pettit Kohn is located in California and Arizona with offices in San Diego, Los Angeles, and Phoenix.  Learn more about Pettit Kohn at: