Trevor Bauer loses motions in Lindsey Hill defamation lawsuit

Trevor Bauer in bed with his baseball cap turned inside out and Lindsey Hill next to him

Trevor Bauer and Lindsey Hill

A federal judge on Wednesday inflicted two losses on the suspended major league baseball pitcher Trevor Bauer in his defamation lawsuit against the woman who accused him of sexual assault, and concluded another judge never acquitted the former Dodgers star of wrongdoing, his attorneys allege.

In the first substantive decisions in Bauer’s three related lawsuits, Senior US District Judge James V Selna granted a motion to ward off Bauer’s claims Lindsey Hills former lawyer, Niranjan “Fred” Thiagarajah from Newport Beach. He also denied Bauer’s request to drop Hill’s counterclaims against him, writing that he lacked clarity from the previous state court hearing as to what really happened between the two.

While judges in the Los Angeles County Superior Court Dianna Gould Saltman Denied Hill’s request for a restraining order against Bauer in August 2021, “it is far from ‘clear’ that she determined that Bauer did not hit or sexually assault Hill,” Selna said.

Selna said the judge found Hill’s request for the injunction “materially misleading,” but his order also included her reason: “because it exaggerated the extent to which Bauer contacted Hill following their May 12 interaction.”

“Bauer lists many of Judge Gould-Saltman’s recitations of the evidence, with particular attention to the judge’s thoughts on what Hill did or did not consent to,” he said 13-page order. “However, the Court’s interpretation of Judge Gould-Saltman’s findings and reasoning does not result in an ‘unambiguous’ determination as to the lack of abuse or the scope of consent.”

the separate, 16-page order Regarding Bauer’s allegations against Thiagarajah, he reiterates this statement, saying that Gould-Saltman’s decision to deny a permanent injunction was “based on insufficient evidence of consent and threats of future harm, not on doubts as to whether Bauer caused the ‘horrific’ injuries to Hill.” Has .”

“Judge Gould-Saltman herself stated that Hill’s injuries were ‘terrific,'” Selna wrote.

The two orders completed rulings that the judge first issued as preliminary rulings before hearing an oral hearing in his Santa Ana courtroom, first on Nov. 7 on Thiagarajah’s request to quash Bauer’s claims, then on Monday on Bauer’s request for Dropping Hill’s Counterclaims. Hill attended every hearing.

Hill, a San Diego resident and baseball fan, met Bauer through Instagram in early 2021, and they had sex on April 21, 2021 at his home in Pasadena, California, engaged in violent acts including choking and hitting, and then met again, to do more sex on May 16, 2021. Bauer says Hill agreed to everything, but Hill says the rough sex she demanded escalated into unexpected violence that caused her to lose consciousness and wake up when Bauer “had powerful and violent anal sex with her”.

“Hill used a ‘safe word’ that the two had previously agreed upon, and Bauer quit,” Selna said in order to reject Bauer’s strike motion. “Hill went to the hospital to be treated for the injuries she sustained as a result of that interaction.”

At the time, Bauer was a star pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers, and a restraining order that Hill obtained against him drew wide attention from journalists. Judge Gould-Saltman declined to issue a more permanent restraining order, and the Los Angeles County Attorney’s Office declined to press charges against Bauer. However, Major League Baseball suspended him for two seasons without pay in April.

That same month, Bauer filed the current lawsuit against Hill and Thiagarajah, alleging both of defamation and Hill also of two counts of tort infringement and anticipated economic advantage. Hill’s countersuit, filed Aug. 9, charges him with sexual assault and assault.

Bauer is also suing the sports journalism website the athlete and journalist Molly Knight for defamation for her reporting of Hill’s allegations before a US District Judge Michael W Fitzgerald in Los Angeles is currently considering defense motions for dismissal and strike. In addition, Bauer has filed a defamation lawsuit in the Southern District of New York against G/O Media, Inc., owner of Deadspin website, and Deadspin Managing Editor Chris Baud for their reporting.

Selna, a 2003 George W Bush appointment, had already issued his interim order granting Thiagarajah’s request to strike under a California law protecting freedom of speech in public affairs. He canceled the hearing, but Bauer’s attorneys persuaded him to change his mind after an Oct. 5 filing alerted him to a video they recently received from the Pasadena Police Department.

In it, Hill, who appears to be filming herself, appears to smile and grin for the camera as she pans to Bauer, who is sleeping with his eyes closed. It was taken on the night of the second encounter, where Hill claims she sustained her worst injuries.

Hill’s lawyers said Thiagarajah must have known about the video when he shared it Washington Post “There is no doubt that Mr. Bauer treated Hill brutally,” but Selna said in court that he would not consider the video because it was filed long after the matter was fully briefed.

Based on the judge’s reasoning in Wednesday’s decision, the video appears to have played no role, as Selna equated Thiagarajah’s use of the word “brutalized” with Gould-Saltman’s description of Hill’s injuries as “horrible.”

All but one of Thiagarajah’s disputed statements are factual, Selna concluded, and the statement that is not is a clear opinion that Thiagarajah has given on Bauer’s decision to dispute Hill’s claims in a YouTube video while he was on his 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination appeals to Gould-Saltman to continue: “It’s easy to deny that these things happened when you don’t have a chance to be cross-examined about it.”

“While it is certainly Bauer’s right to exercise his Fifth Amendment privilege, it is similarly Thiagarajah’s right to exercise his First Amendment privileges,” the judge wrote in a line first floated in his preliminary ruling.

California law entitles Thiagarajah to collect money from Bauer to cover his legal fees for winning a pre-trial motion based on California’s Strategic Lawsuits against Public Participation, commonly referred to as the anti-SLAPP statute. Thiagarajah’s lawyers have seven days to file an application.

(Images: Bauer provides a screenshot via his YouTube; Hill provides a screenshot via video filed with US District Court)

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