A group, headed by Ohio attorney Joni Turner, is organizing a class action civil lawsuit which they claim will be a “legal takedown” of CNN for “defaming,” and spreading “fake news.” Turner announced the effort on Periscope, and has since set up a website asking for class action members to sign up. #OurTakeDown claims that “it is time to hold CNN accountable.”
Within a few hours of launching the website, Turner said she already had 621 people sign up to be part of the class action.
“I am using every avenue available to Legally go after CNN for using their “Fake” News Platform to ‘Defame’ “Bully” “Target” and “Destroy” Conservative Americans,” Turner wrote.
— Joni Turner (@joniturnerlaw) August 25, 2017
In a Periscope video that was watched by thousands, she told her viewers that she was rooting for CNN to say “worse things,” especially taking aim at Don Lemon for his reporting. She said that after a lot of research, she has determined that they may have violated a number of laws including 18 USC 2385 by advocating the overthrow of the government.
“What do you think Kathy Griffin holding the bloody head of Donald Trump meant?” Turner said. “That was a CNN independent contractor that they keep on their payroll that was advocating the beheading in the Islamic terrorist way of beheading … she knew what she was doing.” CNN has since cut ties with Griffin, who apologized for a joke that she admitted “crossed the line.” The Secret Service reportedly investigated the situation, but “completely exonerated” her and “closed the case.”
As for any legal case against CNN, Ms. Jones will likely have a tough time, as commentary and opinion (especially comedy) has generally been protected by the First Amendment and through plenty of Supreme Court case law.
Since joining Periscope eight days ago, Turner has garnered more than 150,000 likes, and has been watched by thousands. LawNewz.com confirmed she is an attorney in the State of Ohio with an active bar license. According to records, Turner had her license suspended in 2003, and again in 2006. We reached out to her for comment, and will update this article when we get it.