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Judge rules in mayor’s favor in slander case

August 23, 2018

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A judge has ruled in favor of a Rhode Island mayor who had been accused of slander by a city councilwoman.

The Providence Journal reports that the judge on Wednesday ruled that comments made by Johnston Mayor Joseph Polisena to then-Councilwoman Eileen Fuoco in October 2013 about her missing meetings while in Florida and being concerned only about getting roads in her district paved did not constitute defamation.

The judge in his decision said Polisena’s First Amendment rights overrode any “hurt feelings.”

The ruling overturned a jury’s finding in June that Polisena had slandered Fuoco, who was awarded $20,000 in damages.

Polisena said Wednesday he “always had confidence we would prevail.”

Fuoco’s attorney said his client is considering her options, but had no further comment.


Information from: The Providence Journal, http://www.providencejournal.com

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