Trevor Bauer’s quest for payback towards sure individuals and publications suffered a few setbacks in court Wednesday when a federal judge dominated in favor of two individuals Bauer has sued and accused of damaging him financially.
One of these defendants is the lady from San Diego who accused the Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher of choking and hitting her final yr throughout two sexual encounters at his residence in Pasadena.
The different defendant was the lady’s former lawyer, Fred Thiagarajah.
US District Judge James V. Selna granted a movement by Thiagarajah to have Bauer’s defamation declare towards him dismissed, stating that Bauer didn’t meet his burden in exhibiting a chance of success on the deserves of that declare towards him.
Thiagarajah is “entitled to recuperate affordable attorneys’ charges and prices, and shall submit an software inside seven days,” the judge’s ruling acknowledged.
In one other ruling, the identical judge additionally denied Bauer’s try to have the San Diego girl’s countersuit towards him dismissed. After Bauer sued her for defamation in April, the lady countersued him in August, restating her claims that he went too far in their encounters with out her consent.
Her lawsuit now can proceed towards Bauer, who has not performed because the girl went public along with her allegations in June 2021. But his bigger battle trudges on: His lawsuit towards the lady remains to be lively, together with two different lawsuits towards two sports activities web sites and two journalists. He is searching for damages from them after accusing them of defamation and blaming them for a lot of the difficulty he’s dealing with as he tries to renew his baseball profession.
In Thiagarajah’s case, Bauer’s attorneys took difficulty with feedback he made to The Washington Post in February after the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office declined to file felony expenses towards Bauer for what occurred between him and the San Diego girl in April and May 2021.
Thiagarajah instructed the Post there was “little doubt that Mr. Bauer simply brutalized” his consumer final yr. Bauer’s attorneys say this was false and defamatory.
Thiagarajah’s attorneys say he was merely giving a “honest and true report” of a court listening to involving Bauer and the lady final yr, which is protected by regulation. A state household court judge in that listening to dominated towards the lady’s request for a everlasting restraining order towards Bauer but additionally famous the pictures of the lady’s accidents had been “horrible.” The girl went to the hospital after her second encounter with Bauer, the place she was identified with an acute head damage and assault by strangulation. Bauer’s authorized staff says these pictures had been “doctored.”
The judge’s ruling Wednesday cited Thiagarajah’s First Amendment proper to free speech.
“The Court has analyzed this difficulty in the context of Bauer’s prima facie defamation declare and located that Thiagarajah’s feedback had been considerably true and communicated the gist of the state court proceedings,” mentioned Selna’s ruling from the federal court in the Central District of California. “For this cause, the Court equally finds that Thiagarajah’s statements are protected by the Fair Reporting Privilege.”
Bauer was positioned on paid administrative depart after the lady got here ahead in June 2021 along with her request for a brief restraining order towards him. Major League Baseball investigated her claims and others after which suspended him for two seasons in April. He has denied wrongdoing and has appealed that suspension after stating his relationship with the lady concerned consensual tough intercourse.
Bauer’s attorneys requested the court to have her countersuit dismissed, arguing that she shouldn’t be allowed to relitigate what was hashed out in household court final yr on the listening to over the restraining order. But Judge Selna famous the judge in the restraining order listening to didn’t make a transparent dedication about whether or not the lady was battered by him as she claims in her countersuit.
That state court judge as an alternative made her choice primarily based on the lady’s failure to current ample proof of an affordable foundation to worry future hurt from Bauer, Selna’s ruling acknowledged. Selna’s ruling additionally mentioned the state court judge famous the scope of the lady’s consent was “unclear.”
“Despite (the lady’s) consent to some type of tough intercourse, Bauer engaged in acts whereas (she) was unconscious, when she was bodily and legally unable to offer consent,” Selna’s ruling acknowledged.
“The Court finds that the state court proceedings didn’t essentially determine that Bauer didn’t batter or sexually assault (the lady) … For the foregoing causes, the Court denies Bauer’s movement to dismiss (the lady’s) counterclaims towards him.”
A February 2024 trial date has been set in Bauer’s defamation lawsuit towards her. The judge’s ruling to dismiss Thiagarajah from one of many lawsuits now means Bauer has defamation lawsuits pending towards 5 individuals or publications as an alternative of six.
Follow reporter Brent Schrotenboer @Schrotenboer. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org