Blake Shelton Wins Legal Victory Against ‘In Touch’ Weekly Magazine
Blake Shelton won a legal victory in his defamation suit against In Touch Weekly Magazine. A Los Angeles judge rejected the magazine’s argument to have the case thrown out of court. The editor of the magazine claims In Touch Weekly never wrote that Shelton was in rehab, only that he should consider it.
According to the Rolling Stone Magazine, Blake was the cover story, “Rehab for Blake: He Finally Hits Rock Bottom.” The article claimed that Shelton’s friends were “terrified that he could end up dead at this rate.” The author of the article asserted Shelton cheated on Lambert and that she caught him with a “bunch of naked women” in the couple’s Tennessee home.
“Mr. Shelton is not in rehab and has no plans to go to rehab, which Bauer would have known had it bothered to contact any of Mr. Shelton’s representatives prior to publication of its misleading Rehab Story,” the lawsuit read. The charges against the magazine includes charges of libel and invasion of privacy.
The judge stated the article insinuated that Blake had an alcohol problem and went to rehab. The judge made it clear that false claims of Shelton in rehab are “libelous” because In Touch Weekly printed the story, knowing that Blake had not ever been to rehab and he was not in rehab at the time they printed the article. Nor did In Touch Weekly reach out to his representatives to confirm their allegations.
— Entertainment Tonight (@etnow) April 19, 2016
The judge stated that running the article and headline as such, “Rehab for Blake: He Finally Hits Rock Bottom,” shows great malice. The judge ruled Shelton had enough evidence to proceed to trial.
The cover story about Blake was released in September 2015. The article focused on the aftermath of Shelton’s split with Lambert. It insinuated he checked into rehab after the split and wanted millions of dollars to make things right between the couple. In Shelton’s lawsuit, filed in L.A. County Supreme Court, Shelton said he did go to rehab and had no plans to go.
Larry Stein, Shelton’s attorney, is suing In Touch Weekly’s parent company, Bauer Media.
TMZ reports that In Touch Weekly claims that Blake Shelton tweets about being drunk. Since he is an allegedly hard-drinking party boy, he can’t sue for defamation.
Blake Shelton listed at least eight gaping holes in the story In Touch Weekly published. Us Magazine reported the list, which includes:
-Shelton has never been to rehab.
-Shelton did not hit “rock bottom” after his divorce.
-Shelton does not drink excessively, binge drink, or have a drinking problem.
-Shelton says he does not drink vodka before 11a.m.
-Shelton says, “I am never drunk, intoxicated, or unable to perform my job on The Voice.”
-Shelton does not slur or stumble when he drinks.
-Shelton never urinated on a mailbox.
Blake also defended his honor during his marriage to Miranda Lambert.
“My ex-wife Miranda Lambert did not catch me with a bunch of naked women in our Tennessee home.”
Crisis expert Judy Smith, who represented Shelton, told TMZ, “The story was categorically false. Blake said enough is enough and decided to fight back.”
According to Rolling Stone, Shelton filed the lawsuit in October 2015. He is seeking more than $1 million in damages and an injunction to prevent In Touch Weekly from reprinting the claims made in the article.
Meanwhile, Shelton continues to coach on NBC’s hit show, The Voice.
[Photo by Matt Sayles/AP Images]