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WTAE Wants Defamation Lawsuit Dismissed

WTAE is seeking to dismiss a defamation lawsuit against the Pittsburgh ABC affiliate that was transferred to federal court last week. Kathy Bass is suing the station over an August 2010 report, claiming WTAE used her photograph while reporting on a woman named Kathy Ann Bass who was accused of kidnapping.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has details on the station’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit:

Attorneys for Hearst wrote that the one-year statute of limitations on defamation claims expired. The delay, Hearst’s lawyers wrote in a brief, may stem from “misgivings about pursuing a claim alleging misidentification as an arrestee when she in fact has an arrest history of her own, the offending mug shot of plaintiff was provided to the press by authorities, and the arrestee alleged to be mistaken for plaintiff is … plaintiff’s daughter.”

A lawyer for Bass confirmed that his client was the mother of the accused kidnapper, but said it had no bearing over the case, according to the Post-Gazette.

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