LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) - Attorneys for embattled referee John Higgins have responded to a motion by Kentucky Sports Radio to dismiss a lawsuit or move it to Kentucky.
Kentucky Sports Radio's Matt Jones and Drew Franklin asked the judge to throw out a lawsuit filed against them by NCAA referee John Higgins.
Higgins is the college basketball official whose company 'The Rooferees' was subjected to hundreds of threatening calls and voicemails from angry Kentucky fans following his work in an Elite Eight game where the Cats lost. Fans also gave his business negative reviews on Facebook.
Higgins filed a lawsuit with Kentucky Sports Radio and its operators Matt Jones and Drew Franklin. The lawsuit alleges that Jones and Franklin shared Higgins' business information on the radio, causing harm to his family and business.
He was seeking damages of $75,000. Matt Jones called the lawsuit frivolous.
In his affidavit, Jones said he “never encouraged anyone to defame, harm, or interfere with the Plaintiffs or their business in anyway shape or form. … In fact, on the radio show broadcast, I advised people to not take the actions described in” the lawsuit.
In his response, Higgins and his wife say that Jones deliberately targeted their Nebraska business, and say that as a result, the trial should remain in their home state.
"Defendants offer the Court a list of ways in which they claim they lack a connection with the State of Nebraska. Defendants carefully neglect to mention the tortious actions they took to seek revenge on a Nebraska man they hated and blamed for the loss of a University of Kentucky basketball game, resulting in the end to the team’s basketball season, which directly affected Defendants’ business," reads the response.
Jones and Franklin, allege the plaintiffs, did everything they could to malign the owner's reputation in light of controversial calls against UK.
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