Defamation Suit … J$16 Milion Awarded Against Latoya Nugent

Blow your Tambourine or whatever, however, you want, as loud as you wish, but be prepared to face the consequences of your action. The court awarded J$16 million for deformation against Latoya Nugent for defaming Rev. Dr. Thompson of the Moravian Church in Jamaica W.I.
Who Cares If Latoya Nugent sleeps with Women? The court did not decide on her guilt for defaming the Moravian clergyman Rev. Dr. Thompson on the basis of her sexual orientation.  The court cared little about whether she slept alone or with her cat, dog or an alligator.  The court had one thing on their mind, a mission to correct an egregious wrong perpetrated by alleged publicity hungry likely anti-men despots. Deformation is wrong and you must pay.
Nugent refused to apologize and instead alleged sent expletives in a letter as her defence. She was rude and her conduct offensive. Insult to injury, you may say. The trial judge was not amused.
The despicable campaign allegedly launched by her was viewed by many as an assault on “real men” disguised as a condemnation of sexual assault by a person in authority in sexual contact with a minor … was central to the public perception that in my perspective led to the verbal assault on the goodly reverend of the Moravian church by Nugent et al aka Tambourine Army. The social media platforms were having a heyday at the same time Nugent et al were making their posts. Nugent et al are entitled to free speech but this should not be an excuse or a license to defame another’s character with impunity.  “No sanky no sing so”.  We do not condone irresponsible behaviour. Full stop.  
Sexual Orientation
Whether Miss Latoya Nugent is heterosexual, bisexual or a lesbian is not important and does not give anyone the license to defame the character of anyone. Facebook has probably 20 million worldwide users.  “It has an extremely wide readership, as is rightly observed by Kaleliah Reynolds” when she spoke on “What’s On My Mind” segment on This Morning on Nationwide News Network (NNN). “It is not only journalists who can be sued for defamation, social media posts are not exempt”.  Who cares if Nugent is heterosexual, lesbian, and or if she refuses to have sex and or chooses to be celibate ..  it cares not. Free speech must not be seen as carrying with it unbridled right to damage anyone’s character. Oh no, dam it not. The J$16 million awarded by the court against Nugent sends a clear signal that any such perceived unbridled freedom does not exist. Rightly so!  The reputational damage was extensive.
Tambourine Army
When Ms. Latoya Nugent for her own reasons decided to broadcast to the world that all church leaders especially the Moravian leadership were allegedly child molesters she and her supporters  in the Tambourine Army and or men haters may have been buoyed by public condemnation of sexual allegations which were widely being reported and discussed in all platforms of the media about Pastor Rupert Clarke. Public sentiments were strong in its condemnation of then 64 year old clergy man Pastor Rupert Clarke of the Moravian church who was arrested for being allegedly caught in a compromising position with an underaged girl.  He was supposed to be a father figure to this teenager, instead he was caught preying on her for sexual favours. He was rightly so accused. Clarke was on trial or before the court and all and sundry were throwing stones and spitting in his direction.  He was being despised for his very poor judgment.  
Nugent used non traditional media/social media … yes Facebook to hurl her venomous assault on all Moravian clergymen.  She thought that to name and shame which seem was her mission did not have consequences. She was likely motivated to use this human failing of Pastor Rupert Clarke as cover to launch her dastardly attack. Alas!  She was exercising poor judgment as she went too far. 
Defamation of character should not be viewed purely or only as “free speech”. It is far more and may even have far reaching consequences than the typical psychological or physical assault which were hear, read, and all know about.  Shakespeare said “who steals my purse steals trash, but he who robs me of my good name robs me of everything.  Medicine including bandages can help to heal a cut etc. but a scar on one’s character could be incurable if not indelible.
Hopeton O’Connor-Dennie is SIC Vision Newspaper Canada.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *