Montana Station Owner/Host Hit With $3.8M Defamation Judgement
September 26, 2008 at 5:26 AM (PT)
Three comments made by controversial Talk KGEZ-A (THE EDGE, Z-600)/KALISPELL, MT owner and host JOHN STOKES about the owners of a neighboring business have drawn STOKES a $3.8 million defamation judgement, reports the FLATHEAD BEACON. STOKES was hit with the judgement for saying that recreational vehicle dealership and auction barn owner DAVAR GARDNER and his son TODD GARDNER lied under oath and submitted a false affidavit during previous litigation with STOKES, and obtained a bank loan using fraud.
The ruling gave the GARDNERS $900,000 in emotional and monetary damages (trebled) and $2 million in punitive damages, and also held that STOKES' former corporations, now defunct, are one and the same for liability purposes.
TODD GARDNER told the BEACON, "We are ecstatic about it. We know we’ll probably never see a dollar, but the more important thing is the message it sends to the valley about what’s right and wrong. Just because you have a microphone doesn’t mean you can attack someone."