Jeppson v. LeyAnnotate this Case
After defendant's dog killed plaintiff's cat, the parties settled for $2,000 and a written agreement with a non-disparagement clause. However, defendant then posted a hostile message on a neighborhood blog about plaintiff, who responded by suing defendant and his wife for breach of contract, defamation, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Defendant and his wife filed an anti-SLAPP motion under Code of Civil Procedure section 425.16.
The Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court's denial of defendant's anti-SLAPP motion and held that there was no public interest in defendant's internet post about plaintiff. In this case, neither party was in the public eye; none of their acts directly affected a large number of people beyond the three households; and there was no issue of public interest when the speaker's words were merely an effort to gather ammunition for another round in the speaker's neighborhood wrangle.