Covington High Students Sue Elizabeth Warren, Kathy Griffin And Others For Defamation

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Last Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019, a federal judge threw out a lawsuit by Nicholas Sandmann, a student at Covington Catholic High School, accusing the Washington Post of falsely labeling him a racist during an encounter with a Native American man at the Lincoln Memorial. (AP Photo/Lisa Cornwell, File)

DEADLINE. A lawsuit targeting a dozen celebrities and public figures was filed Friday on behalf of eight unnamed Covington Catholic High School students, seeking damages for alleged defamatory comments made in the wake of a viral video incident.

In the widely broadcast video, the students were seen laughing and smirking as Native American activist Nathan Phillips waded into their midst, banging a drum and chanting. The video, which seemed to show Phillips under attack by the student group, drew instant condemnation on social media as an example of so-called white privilege. At least until it was revealed that Phillips instigated the confrontation with the teens, who were merely waiting for a bus, and were themselves being racially abused by a nearby black activist group.

The lawsuit was filed in Kentucky and names 12 individuals, including Democrat presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren; actress Kathy Griffin; journalists Maggie Haberman, Ana Navarro and Shaun King; Rep. Debra Haaland from New Mexico,and Adam Edelen, a former state auditor of Kentucky; Political analyst Matthew Dowd; author Reza Aslan; and Princeton history professor Kevin Kruse.

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