KELLY WARNER LAW FIRM: “Minnesota Judge Dismisses Online Defamation Lawsuit; World War II Vet Emerges Victorious”

MAY 14, 2011

“Minnesota Judge Dismisses Online Defamation Lawsuit; World War II Vet Emerges Victorious”

KELLY WARNER LAW FIRM

Kenneth-Vernon-L-WWII-Navy-PO2

“In modern society, there needs to be some give and take, some ability for parties to air their differences,” began Minnesota Sixth Judicial Judge, Eric Hylden. “Today, those disagreements may take place on various Internet sources. Because the medium has changed, however, does not make statements of this kind any more or less defamatory,” he concluded. Hylden’s recent judgment is one in a long line of online defamation lawsuit decisions to air on the side of free speech.

The Online Defamation Lawsuit Background

Several months ago, McKee vs. Laurion landed in Judge Hylden’s rotation. Dr. McKee, the plaintiff, filed civil charges against Dennis Laurion, the defendant, after several unflattering missives about the doctor appeared online.

Laurion’s father, Kenneth, a World War II veteran, had been treated by McKee after a hemorrhagic stroke. Suffice it to say, Dennis was not impressed with the neurologist’s medical prowess or bedside manner. Disturbed, Laurion took to the Internet and wasn’t shy about sharing his opinions.

McKee Files Online Defamation Lawsuit

Feeling stunted, McKee decided to fight back via the courts. That’s why, last June, with the help of attorney Marshall Tanick, McKee filed an online defamation lawsuit claim in Duluth. He accused the younger Laurion of publishing spurious claims which negatively affected his (McKee’s) professional status.

Attorneys across the country enthusiastically followed the online defamation lawsuit; after all, it had the potential to establish online defamation legal precedence.

In February, at the summary judgment hearing, Judge Hylden openly questioned whether or not online commentary limits needed to be legally established.

Online Defamation Lawsuit Decision

After considering both arguments and mulling over the issue for several weeks, the Minnesota Judge stuck with current legal convention and dismissed the online defamation lawsuit case. In the end, Hylden decided there simply wasn’t enough objective material for a jury to consider.

Online defamation lawsuits are as American as apple pie. In a country where reputation capital is fiercely guarded, slander and libel are taken very seriously. But the First Amendment is also a point of national pride, and defamation claims are easily argued away using free speech platitudes.

Undoubtedly dejected after hearing about the dismissal, Dr. McKee spat out a few choice words; “Dennis Laurion,” crowed McKee, “is a liar and a bully and a coward.” (Clearly, McKee could have also used the help of a public relations representative.)

Better luck next time, Doc.

SOURCE

Reprinted October 28th, 2011, Last updated May 10th, 2014, by Kelly Warner Law

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Web Posting

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Patient Complaint

Plaintiff David McKee’s Reply To Patient Complaint

Plaintiff David McKee’s Cease And Desist Letter To Defendant Dennis Laurion

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Complaint To Minnesota Board Of Medical Practice

Plaintiff David McKee’s Complaint To Sixth Judicial District Duluth Court

Plaintiff David McKee’s Response To Minnesota Board Of Medical Practice

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Answer To Plaintiff David McKee’s Complaint

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Motion For Summary Judgment

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Deposition Extracts

Plaintiff David McKee’s Deposition Testimony About Circumstances Before Encounter With Laurion Family

Plaintiff David McKee’s Deposition Testimony About Encounter With Laurion Family

Plaintiff David McKee’s Deposition Testimony About Circumstances After Encounter With Laurion Family

Plaintiff David McKee’s Deposition Testimony In Response To Questions By Marshall Tanick

Affidavits By Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Parents

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Supplemental Motion For Summary Judgment

Plaintiff David McKee’s Motion To Oppose Summary Judgment

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Reply Memo In Support Of Motion For Summary Judgment

Sixth Judicial District Court’s Order On Motion For Summary Judgment

Plaintiff David McKee’s Appeal Of Order On Motion For Summary Judgment

Plaintiff David McKee’s Brief To Minnesota Court Of Appeals

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Brief To Minnesota Court Of Appeals

Plaintiff David McKee’s Reply Brief To Minnesota Court Of Appeals

Minnesota Court Of Appeals Order To Strike Portion Of Plaintiff David McKee’s Reply Brief

Minnesota Court Of Appeals Announces Decision

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Petition For Review By Minnesota Supreme Court

Plaintiff David McKee’s Opposition To Review By Minnesota Supreme Court

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Brief To Minnesota Supreme Court

Plaintiff David McKee’s Brief To Minnesota Supreme Court

Defendant Dennis Laurion’s Reply Brief To Minnesota Supreme Court

Minnesota Supreme Court Decision On David McKee MD V. Dennis K. Laurion

David McKee MD v. Dennis Laurion 2010

David McKee MD v. Dennis Laurion 2011

David McKee MD v. Dennis Laurion 2012

David McKee MD v. Dennis Laurion 2013

McKee V Laurion Is A Textbook Case

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s