An attorney working for Covington Catholic High School student Nicholas Sandmann has taken steps toward suing media organizations and personalities that reported on a now-infamous incident at last month’s March for Life event.
Sandmann was at the center of a contentious confrontation, in which students were seen jeering at Native American Nathan Phillips as he performed a traditional song. Sandmann stood just feet from Phillips, smiling in the Native American man’s face during the song.
As WKRC reported, an attorney working with Sandmann’s family is now taking steps toward suing media organizations that may have painted Sandmann as an aggressor in the situation. Attorney L. Lin Wood of Atlanta has sent letters to media organizations, individual reporters, and leaders of the local Catholic diocese, asking them to preserve material in preparation for a lawsuit, the report noted.
The list of those receiving the letter includes news organizations like NPR, TMZ, CNN, and the Washington Post. It also included many individuals who commented on the viral incident, including Senator Elizabeth Warren and comedian Kathy Griffin.
The incident remains filled with controversy. Students say they were harassed by a group of street preachers known as the Black Hebrew Israelites, who are known for yelling inflammatory insults at people. Phillips said he saw the confrontation and wanted to help diffuse it, so began playing a song on his drum. Video footage showed the teens apparently mocking the Native American man by shouting and doing a tomahawk chop. Later video showed a group of teens harassing other people at the March for Life rally while shouting slogans supporting Donald Trump, as reports initially claimed, though it was not clear if this was the same group of students from Covington Catholic High School.
As WCPO reported, lawyer L. Lin Wood has been known for working with often controversial clients. He is also known for his aggressive tactics against media outlets that report on his clients. He had worked for former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain after Cain faced allegations of sexual harassment.
Nick Sandmann's lawyers have sent letters for potential lawsuits to:— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) February 3, 2019
“Other notable clients include the family of JonBenet Ramsey, who were suspects in the child pageant queen’s murder, and Richard Jewell, a Centennial Olympic Park guard misidentified as having bombed his workplace in 1996,” the report noted.
Nicholas Sandmann later said in an interview that he did not intend to harass Nathan Phillips, and was only smiling to show that he did not want to escalate the situation.