An attorney representing students and alumni from Covington Catholic High School announced on Wednesday that his clients are giving journalists and celebrities 48 hours to either retract false statements made about them or face legal action.
“Everybody now is on 48-hour notice so by Friday, everybody needs to retract and correct any false statements they have issued about these kids,” Los Angeles-based attorney Robert Barnes said on Fox News’ “Fox & Friends.”
“That includes any major member of the media. That includes any major celebrity. That includes anybody with a substantial social media platform,” he added.
Barnes pointed out, unlike falsehoods directed at public figures (like politicians), the standard to successfully prove libel in court is negligence, not malice. At the time of the confrontation, the students were in Washington for the annual March for Life demonstration protesting legalized abortion.
“Because these are all private citizens and in many cases minors and kids, the law is saying anything false about them is libel,” he explained. “You don’t have a defense of actual malice. All you have to prove is negligence.
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