In a companion to the high-profile libel case of Tatum v. Dallas Morning News, the Fifth Court addressed the “anti-SLAPP” dismissal of the Tatum’s suit against Julie Hersh, a book author who allegedly discussed the subject of the offending column with columnist Steve Blow. For purposes of the motion, the Court assumed that “Hersh admitted talking with Blow about suicide and secrecy in general, but . . . denied making the alleged statements that the Tatums based their claims on—statements about [their son’s] death and obituary that encouraged Blow to write critically about those facts.” Based on those facts, the Court reversed dismissal, finding that its holding in Pickens v. Cordia, 433 S.W.3d 179 (Tex. App.–Dallas 2014, no pet.), controlled when “the defendant’s motion admits participating in a conversation generally but denies making the specific relevant statements in particular.” Tatum v. Hersh, No. 05-14-01318-CV (Dec. 30, 2015).
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