A civil rights activist is suing Fox News host Jeanine Pirro, claiming she defamed him while discussing a lawsuit against the Black Lives Matter movement that was later dismissed.
The lawsuit states that DeRay McKesson was falsely arrested while attending a 2016 protest in Baton Rouge in which a police officer was struck in the face with a rock. The officer anonymously sued the Black Lives Matter movement and McKesson.
A federal judge ruled that Black Lives Matter is not an entity capable of being sued and concluded that the officer's own claims demonstrated that Mckesson "solely engaged in protected speech" at the July 9, 2016, demonstration, which followed the fatal shooting of Alton Sterling, a black man, by a white Baton Rouge police officer.
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During an appearance on Fox News, the lawsuit claims Pirro falsely stated that McKesson "directed someone to hit the police officer in the face with a rock." The suit says the statements were extremely dangerous and continue to endanger McKesson.
Fox News says Pirro's statements are protected speech.
The suit, which also names Fox News Network, was filed in New York on Tuesday.