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Wisconsin Supreme
Court Rejects Defamation Lawsuit

Wisconsin Supreme
Court Rejects Defamation Lawsuit

The Wisconsin supreme court rejected a case brought by an antigay activist who claims that an LGBT rights group defamed him.

The Wisconsin supreme court rejected a case brought by an antigay activist who claims that an LGBT rights group defamed him. Reverend Grant Storms of New Orleans sued Action Wisconsin after it excerpted a 2003 speech he made in Milwaukee on "homo-fascism" in the city, which the group said revealed his advocating the murder of gays, according to the Associated Press.

The speech included a passage in which he made sounds like gunshots, as if he were shooting gay people, and said, "God has delivered them into our hands. Boom, boom, boom ... there's 20! Ca-ching! Glory, glory to God." It is reported that a Wisconsin state senator was in the audience.

Milwaukee County judge Patricia McMahon dismissed the case in 2005. Her decision that Action Wisconsin's response to Storms's remarks were reasonable was never appealed. McMahon also said that Storms attorney James Donohoo's arguments were "frivolous" and ordered him to pay court costs of $87,000. The state supreme court upheld that decision by refusing to hear the case. With the additional expenses of appealing the case, he now owes nearly $120,000.

"[T]here was no basis in fact or law that would support Donohoo's claim that Action Wisconsin's statements were made with actual malice," the supreme court said Thursday. (The Advocate)

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