Originally Posted by Brian Pfleuger
There are 4 basic standards for winning a Slander/Libel case.
1)Someone actually DID say/write it.
2)Someone other than the plaintiff heard/saw it.
3)It can be proved who said/wrote it.
4)The Plaintiff's finances/reputation were damaged by what was said/written.
The first 3, in this case, are a slam dunk.
You missed one: The statement must be false or incorrect, and the person making the statement must either have known it to be false or incorrect, or have failed to make any "reasonable" effort to determine the veracity of the statement before making it. ["Reckless disregard for truth"]
As to your #4, I'm not sure that actual damages have to be proven in order to win a lawsuit for libel or slander, but the amount of monetary loss the subject might have incurred or is likely to incur would no doubt affect the amount of any damages awarded. I think another factor is that it must be proven that the person making the statement did so with the intention of damaging the subject's reputation or income.
However, IANAL either.
JimDandy, Whitlock initially made the statement orally, on a broadcast. That makes it slander. The fact that the story was later reported in print media doesn't change that.