Spike Lee wants Florida Zimmerman tweet lawsuit ended

Spike Lee has asked a federal judge to throw out lawsuit filed by a Florida couple who say the movie director mistakenly retweeted their address as the home of George Zimmerman.

Lee's attorneys filed a motion Tuesday to dismiss the lawsuit brought by Elaine and David McClain. The director's attorneys argued the lawsuit should be tossed out since the couple reached a $10,000 settlement with Lee last year.

“The court should dismiss this case because plaintiffs have already settled the claim of negligence,” Lee's attorneys said.

The McClains contend the settlement only covered damages through the March 2012 settlement date and didn't include suffering that occurred afterward, including the aftermath last July of Zimmerman's acquittal in the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

The McClains received death threats and had to move out of their home after the original Twitter post, they said in their lawsuit.

“Plaintiffs suffered and continue to suffer mental anguish and distress,” the McClains attorneys said in the complaint. “Plaintiffs suffered and continue to suffer anxiety and fear.”

If the case isn't dismissed, it should be heard in federal court rather than state court due to possible prejudices of local courts and juries on an out-of-state defendant, Lee's attorneys said. The complaint originally was filed in Florida court but Lee sought to have the case moved to federal court. A magistrate judge recommended that the case be returned to state court and Lee has filed an objection.

After Lee put the McClains' address in a Twitter post, the director removed the tweet and apologized for the mistake in another tweet.

Lee's attorneys said the couple wants $1.2 million, based on a phone call they had with an attorney for the McClains. The couple's attorneys, though, haven't acknowledged in court filings the amount of damages they're seeking.

George ZimmermanSpike LeeTrayvon MartinUS

Just Posted

A felled tree in Sydney G. Walton Square blocks part of a lane on Front Street following Sunday’s storm on Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
After the rain: What San Francisco learned from a monster storm

Widespread damage underscored The City’s susceptibility to heavy wind and rain

Plan Bay Area 2050 is an expansive plan guiding the region’s growth and development over the next three decades. The regional plan addresses progressive policy priorities like a universal basic income and a region-wide rent cap, alongside massive new spending on affordable housing and transportation infrastructure. (Shutterstock)
$1.4 trillion ‘blueprint’ would address Bay Area’s housing, transit woes

Analyzing the big ticket proposals in ‘Plan Bay Area 2050’

A felled tree in San Francisco is pictured on Fillmore Street following a major storm that produced high winds and heavy rains on Oct. 24, 2021. (Photo courtesy of Philip Ford)
Storm updates: Rainiest October day in San Francisco history

Rainfall exceeded 10 inches in parts of the Bay Area

On Sunday, California bore the brunt of what meteorologists referred to as a bomb cyclone and an atmospheric river, a convergence of storms that brought more than half a foot of rain to parts of the Bay Area, along with high winds, concerns about flash floods and the potential for heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada. Much of the Bay Area was under a flash flood watch on Sunday, with the National Weather Service warning of the potential for mudslides across the region. (NOAA via The New York Times)
Bomb cyclone, atmospheric river combine to pummel California with rain and wind

What you need to know about this historic weather event

The Department of Building Inspection, at 49 South Van Ness Ave., has been mired in scandal since since its creation by voter referendum under Proposition G in 1994. (Courtesy SF.gov)
The Department of Building Inspection, at 49 South Van Ness Ave., has been mired in scandal since its creation by voter referendum under Proposition G in 1994. (Courtesy SF.gov)
Whistleblowing hasn’t worked at the SF Dept. of Building Inspection

DBI inspectors say their boss kept them off connected builders’ projects

Most Read