Lawyers Take First Steps in Repairing Covington Student's Reputation

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Posted: Feb 04, 2019 8:30 AM
 Lawyers Take First Steps in Repairing Covington Student's Reputation

The high profile libel attorney who’s representing Nick Sandmann, the Covington Catholic teen who was wrongly smeared as a racist last month, released a 14-minute video revealing the truth about what happened on January 18, when a brief clip appearing to show Sandmann mocking Native American activist Nathan Phillips went viral.

The video shows events leading up to the incident—the role the black Hebrew Israelites played as well as the Native American activists. A considerable amount of the short film is also spent on Phillips’s role in spreading a false narrative against Sandmann and his classmates and the media’s culpability in being all too quick to propagate it.

“Two weeks ago, the mainstream media, politicians, church officials, commentators, & celebrities rushed to judgment to wrongfully condemn, threaten, disparage & vilify Nick Sandmann based solely on a few seconds of an out-of-context video clip. It only takes 15 minutes to learn the truth," the description on the YouTube video says. 

“A mob rushed to judgment to wrongfully condemn, threaten & vilify Nick Sandmann based solely on an out-of-context video clip. It only takes 15 minutes to learn the truth. Here it is,” tweeted Lin Wood.

Todd McMurtry, one of Sandmann's attorneys, told a local news station that a team of lawyers is currently determining which entities will be sued. 

In the meantime, "letters [have been sent] to media organizations, reporters and Diocesan officials demanding they preserve material in preparation for a lawsuit," Local 12 reports. 

Dozens of media outlets, journalists, celebrities, and others received the letter on Friday: 

  • The Washington Post
  • The New York Times
  • Cable News Network, Inc. (CNN)
  • The Guardian
  • National Public Radio
  • TMZ
  • Atlantic Media Inc.
  • Capitol Hill Publishing Corp.
  • Diocese of Covington
  • Diocese of Lexington
  • Archdiocese of Louisville
  • Diocese of Baltimore
  • Ana Cabrera
  • Sara Sidner
  • Erin Burnett
  • S.E. Cupp
  • Elliot C. McLaughlin
  • Amanda Watts
  • Emanuella Grinberg
  • Michelle Boorstein
  • Cleve R. Wootson Jr.
  • Antonio Olivo
  • Joe Heim
  • Michael E. Miller
  • Eli Rosenberg
  • Isaac Stanley-Becker
  • Kristine Phillips
  • Sarah Mervosh
  • Emily S. Rueb
  • Maggie Haberman
  • David Brooks
  • Shannon Doyne
  • Kurt Eichenwald
  • Andrea Mitchell
  • Savannah Guthrie
  • Joy Reid
  • Chuck Todd
  • Noah Berlatsky
  • Elisha Fieldstadt
  • Eun Kyung Kim
  • HBO
  • Bill Maher
  • Warner Media
  • Conde Nast
  • GQ
  • Heavy.com
  • The Hill
  • The Atlantic
  • Bustle.com
  • Ilhan Omar
  • Elizabeth Warren
  • Kathy Griffin
  • Alyssa Milano
  • Jim Carrey

"They know they crossed the line," McMurtry said, reports Cincinnati.com.

"Do they want 12 people in Kentucky to decide their fate? I don't think so." 

After a review, the lawyers "concluded we have a good faith basis to sue" certain organizations, McMurtry said. However, he said not all the organizations who were sent letters will necessarily be sued. He added that this process will not be over quickly.

McMurtry said his clients will also be demanding retractions and apologies in addition to possible litigation. (Cincinnati.com)

"We want to change the conversation. We don't want this to happen again," McMurtry said. "We want to teach people a lesson."