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Falwell Jr. files lawsuit against Liberty University

Published: Oct. 29, 2020 at 12:15 PM EDT
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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ/AP) - Former Liberty University President Jerry Falwell, Jr., who resigned over the summer, is suing the university.

Falwell announced his resignation in August; he was already on leave after a he posted a photo on social media of him with his pants unzipped, stomach exposed and arm high around the waist of his wife’s pregnant assistant.

In the suit filed October 28 in Lynchburg Circuit Court, Falwell claims the university made and published defamatory statements about him. The suit says those statements were “false and exposed Mr. Falwell to contempt, ridicule, hatred, and obloquy.”

The document also says parts of a speech made by David Nasser at the university’s Community Service event August 26, the day after his resignation was accepted, were defamatory. Nasser is the university’s Senior Vice President for Spiritual Development.

The suit also claims part of this press release were defamatory because LU “connected its accusation of a lack of spiritual leadership with [Giancarlo] Granda’s false allegations (about having an affair with Falwell’s wife) by noting ‘all the signs were not there until the start of last week,’ i.e., when Granda’s false allegations were publicized, and that while Liberty ‘still didn’t know the full scope of the matter, [it] had learned enough...’”

The suit indicates Falwell has suffered damage to his reputation due to defamatory statements, and as a result, Falwell’s “reputation, profession, and future employment prospects and business opportunities have been harmed.”

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