The Georgia Court of Appeals in Ladner v. New World Communications of Atlanta, Inc., A17A00883 (Ga. Ct. App. 2017) has upheld the dismissal of a libel suit brought by a military veteran against WAGA-TV FOX 5 Atlanta. [Note: Duane Morris represented FOX 5 in this matter.] FOX 5 broadcast a series of investigative reports by reporter Randy Travis challenging plaintiff Shane Ladner’s statements that he fought in the United States Invasion of Panama and received the Purple Heart Award.
FOX 5 successfully argued that Ladner was a limited-purpose public figure, and that Ladner could not show evidence of actual malice sufficient to have his case heard by a jury. More