The former CEO of St. Mary’s Medical Center in West Palm Beach, Davide Carbone, is suing CNN over a fake news story they put out on him that forced him to resign his job and has made it impossible to find another job because of the way he was libeled and slandered by CNN.
Carbone says that CNN purposely used misleading information and false comparisons to show that his hospital has a mortality rate among infants is three times the national average. He is suing for defamation and over lost wages.
The judge in the case reviewed the request for dismissal by CNN and bolstered by Amici Curiae briefs from several news outlets including Fox News. In the end, the judge ruled against CNN on both the georgia Anti-Slapp law and on wheether the plaintiff has sufficient eveidence to show that they could win the suit.
From Law Newz:
Davide Carbone, former CEO of St. Mary’s Medical Center in West Palm Beach, filed a defamation lawsuit against CNN after they aired what he claims were a “series of false and defamatory news reports” regarding the infant mortality rate at the hospital. CNN’s report said the mortality rate was three times the national average. However, Mr. Carbone contends that CNN “intentionally” manipulated statistics to bolster their report. He also claims that CNN purposely ignored information that would look favorable to the hospital in order to sensationalize the story.
“In our case, we contended that CNN essentially made up its own standard in order to conduct an ‘apples to oranges’ comparison to support its false assertion that St. Mary’s mortality rate was 3 times higher than the national average. Accordingly, the case against CNN certainly fits the description of media-created ‘Fake News.’” said Carbone’s attorney L. Lin Wood, in a statement to LawNewz.com.
Wood says that as a result of CNN’s story Carbone lost his job and it became extremely difficult for him to find new employment in the field of hospital administration.
“False and defamatory accusations against real people have serious consequences. Neither St. Mary’s or Mr. Carbone did anything to deserve being the objects of the heinous accusation that they harmed or put babies and young children at risk for profit,” Wood said.
On Wednesday, Federal District Judge Orinda Evans ruled that the case could move forward, even ruling that she found that CNN may have acted with “actual malice” with the report — a standard necessary to prove a defamation claim.
“The Court finds these allegations sufficient to establish that CNN was acting recklessly with regard to the accuracy of its report, i.e., with ‘actual malice,” the order reads. CNN had tried to get the case dismissed.