Great Good News, Dear Friends and Comrades. Thanks to a wise Federal judge in Newark, New Jersey, the 900 pound stone that has been sitting on Patrick H’s (and by extension All Things Crime Blog’s) head ever since the blog and Old Man Mo’ were sued by an angry person who insisted Moore and the blog were guilty of libel and defamation, has been rolled away and Moore and All Things Crime Blog are breathing a sigh of relief. Please join me in a toast of celebration.
In short, all charges against us have been Dismissed with Prejudice, which means the plaintiff cannot bring a fresh lawsuit against Moore and the blog based on the same evidence (or lack thereof).
I want to thank each and everyone of you who was so supportive during this difficult time, and there were a lot of you. It meant worlds to me knowing that there were so many of you out there who gave a damn and wished me well. You know who you are and I will always remember your kind support.
I also want to thank my skilled lawyer, Jared Geist, who works for a New Jersey law firm named Garces, Grabler & LeBrocq. Mr. Geist wrote several highly cogent and persuasive briefs in our defense, and based on the strength and logic of his reasoning, the outcome was probably never really in doubt. Nonetheless, Old Man Mo’ was naturally sweating it out and is glad things have ended on this positive note.
Mr. Geist performed his valuable services for a very reasonable retainer, which I certainly appreciate(d). He has also expressed interest in writing a post on the right to Free Speech based on this case, which I assured him I would be delighted to post here on ATCB. Hopefully, he will find the time to put something together for us. He is a strong believer in Free Speech, which, I believe, is part of the reason, he represented us for such a reasonable rate.
The judge’s criteria for dismissing the allegations are clear and bode well for bloggers everywhere who want to report and analyze news of any kind. The judge’s Opinion is an excellent example of clear and cogent legal analysis, the gist of which is that the statements made by All Things Crime Blog and three other media outlets who had the charges against them Dismissed with prejudice are protected under New Jersey’s “fair-report privilege.”
My dad (Pops) was originally from New Jersey, and as a few of you may remember, I had a few hella fine adventures in the Garden State when I was still quite young, so I’m glad to see N.J. is capable of and willing to Do the Right Thing.
Personally, at this juncture, I’m mostly focusing on writing my second crime novel, which may or may not be titled The Playing Field. Those of you who read and enjoyed Cicero’s Dead, which has been selling at a decent clip since April 28th, can assume that with luck, skill, sufficient time in front of the keyboard, and good editing, Nick Crane’s second adventure MAY also prove to be interesting.
Although I don’t plan on writing many true crime blogs in the near future, I will when time (that precious commodity) permits, and I still welcome crime posts of any ilk from contributing crime writers.
And with that, let’s raise another glass in celebration. And remember, “neither a libeler nor a defamer be”.