Lawyers for Covington Kid Send Letters to News Outlets, Celebrities: CNN, NYT, Chuck Todd, Jim Carrey

By Michael W. Chapman | February 4, 2019 | 12:31pm EST
Nick Sandmann, left,
confronted by activist Nathan
Phillips. (YouTube)

Lawyers representing the Covington Catholic High School boy who was confronted by Indian activists after the March for Life -- for which he was criticized as being racist, hateful, toxic, and a white nationalist -- have sent at least 50 letters to major news outlets and celebrities to preseve all documentation (emails, texts, etc.) they have about the young man, in preparation for a potential lawsuit against those entities.

The letters, as reported by USA Today,  have been sent to such outlets and persons as The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Hill, CNN, National Public Radio, CNN's Erin Burnett, CNN's S.E. Cupp, The Post's Kristine Phillips, NYT's David Brooks, NYT's Maggie Haberman, NBC's Andrea Mitchell, NBC's Chuck Todd, HBO's Bill Maher, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Kathy Griffin, Alyssa Milano and Jim Carrey.


The letter, from Attorney Todd McMurty with Hemmer, DeFrank, Wessels Attorneys at Law, partly states, "Our law firm represents the family of Nick Sandmann regarding the unfortunate incident in Washington D.C. on January 18, 2019, and the XXXXX’s response to same (the “Sandmann Matter”). I write on behalf of our clients to notify you of your obligation to preserve information that may be relevant to potential litigation between our clients and the XXXXX. 

"Please forward this letter to your legal counsel immediately. Please preserve all information that may be relevant to the Sandmann Matter. If our clients pursue litigation, we intend to serve the XXXXX with discovery requests to access your computer networks and systems, and to seek the production of relevant documents and communications. ... [Y]ou must preserve all information and documents relating to the Sandmann Matter during the period from January 17, 2019 to the present."

The letter further states, "Failure to comply with this notice could result in sanctions being imposed by the Court for spoliation of evidence or potential evidence. Please confirm in writing that you have received this letter, that you understand your preservation obligations, and that you will honor these obligations. When you retain legal counsel, please have that person call me with any questions."

Another lawyer working on the case is  L. Lin Wood, known as one of the top libel, defamation, and First Amendment lawyers in the country. Because of his litigation success, CBS's Dan Rather labeled him the "Attorney for the Damned."

In a Jan. 25 statement about the case, Wood and McMurty said, "On January 18, in the span of a few hours, Nick Sandmann’s peaceful attendance with his Covington Catholic classmates at the March for Life in Washington, D.C. was turned into a personal nightmare when Nick became the focus of false and defamatory accusations published and broadcast across the nation and the world.

(Screenshot, L. Lin wood, PC)

"A mob comprised of activists, church and school officials, members of the mainstream print and broadcast media, and individuals on social media, including elected public officials and celebrities, rushed to condemn and vilify this young man by burying him in an avalanche of false accusations, false portrayals, and cyberbullying that have threatened his reputation and his physical safety. 

"Nick Sandmann is 16 years old. He is an eleventh-grade high school student. He is not the face of evil and he did absolutely nothing wrong or inappropriate in connection with the incident to deserve the heinous accusations made against him by uninformed or agenda-driven individuals and media entities.

Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann being interviewed
on NBC's Today Show by reporter Savannah Guthrie. (YouTube)

"... In the coming weeks, we will be carefully reviewing all of the false accusations and threats made against Nick. We fully expect that a multitude of civil lawsuits will be filed and aggressively pursued. We recognize that justice for Nick will not be achieved quickly, but we are dedicated to achieving it for this young man regardless of time or expense."

In a Feb. 1 statement, Wood's office said, "The media has largely moved on from their despicable smearing of the students of Covington Catholic with a plethora of fake news stories that put the teens, their families and their school in peril after they were falsely accused of hurling racist slurs at an elderly Native American man.

Attorney Todd V. McMurty.

"Following the incident which took place in Washington D.C. during the March For Life, 16-year-old Nick Sandmann was vilified and slimed by the media as the face of hate simply because he stood his ground when confronted by Nathan Phillips and because he was wearing a red MAGA hat.

"The false narrative quickly began to deteriorate once a more extensive video showed that the teens were being heckled by black supremacists who showered them with racist and homophobic slurs and instigated the entire confrontation who like Phillips, were the true instigators."

In their story, USA Today reported that letters had been sent to the following:

  • The Washington Post
  • The New York Times
  • Cable News Network, Inc. (CNN)
  • The Guardian
  • National Public Radio
  • TMZ
  • Atlantic Media Inc.
  • Capitol Hill Publishing Corp.
  • Diocese of Covington
  • Diocese of Lexington
  • Archdiocese of Louisville
  • Diocese of Baltimore
  • Ana Cabrera
  • Sara Sidner
  • Erin Burnett
  • S.E. Cupp
  • Elliot C. McLaughlin
  • Amanda Watts
  • Emanuella Grinberg
  • Michelle Boorstein
  • Cleve R. Wootson Jr.
  • Antonio Olivo
  • Joe Heim
  • Michael E. Miller
  • Eli Rosenberg
  • Isaac Stanley-Becker
  • Kristine Phillips
  • Sarah Mervosh
  • Emily S. Rueb
  • Maggie Haberman
  • David Brooks
  • Shannon Doyne
  • Kurt Eichenwald
  • Andrea Mitchell
  • Savannah Guthrie
  • Joy Reid
  • Chuck Todd
  • Noah Berlatsky
  • Elisha Fieldstadt
  • Eun Kyung Kim
  • HBO
  • Bill Maher
  • Warner Media
  • Conde Nast
  • GQ
  • The Hill
  • The Atlantic
  • Ilhan Omar
  • Elizabeth Warren
  • Kathy Griffin
  • Alyssa Milano
  • Jim Carrey

h/t USA Today


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