Omaha Firefighter Basher Must Disclose Source

A judge has ruled that a self-appointed spokesperson for the taxpayers of Omaha who publically accused the president of the Omaha Firefighters Local 385 of “theft by deception”, must disclose the source of his information.

David Nabity, President of the Omaha Alliance for the Private Sector made the accusations on a radio talk show last October. He accused Union President Steve LeClair of “acting in an illegal and dishonest manner in exercising his employment duties with the City of Omaha”, “receiving money from public funds” that weren’t due to him, and “theft by deception”.

The October 29, 2010 statements prompted a defamation suit by LeClair four days later, and a counter-claim by Nabity that LeClair was trying to chill the exercise of his 1st Amendment rights.

The court’s ruling last week means that Nabity will have to disclose the source of the information he based his statements on, or admit they were a fabrication.

There’s a good video on the decision – but for some reason I cannot get it to display properly – so here is the link.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.

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