T.I. and Tameka “Tiny” Harris suffered a blow in court this week, amid their legal battle with Sabrina Peterson. Clifford aka “T.I.” Harris and his wife’s motion to dismiss Peterson’s defamation lawsuit was denied by a Los Angeles judge on Tuesday, September 14. Judge David Sotelo shot down the couple’s motion to dismiss the anti-SLAPP—which stands for Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation—lawsuit. The law was created to prevent people from using lawsuit threats to intimidate those exercising their rights protected under the First Amendment.
As previously reported—Peterson accused the rapper and his wife, Tiny Harris, of public defamation via statements posted on social media, after she put T.I. on blast for allegedly holding her at gunpoint. Peterson claimed that T.I. pointed a gun at her face and threatened her life after a minor argument. Tiny and T.I. retaliated by putting out public statements and denouncing her story online.
Tiny called Peterson “strange” on social media and commented— “everybody know you been special.” Peterson alleged in her suit that she had been hit by online harassment and nasty messages after Tiny shared a photo of her son. T.I. maintains that the comments were simply opinions, and therefore not outside any legal boundary. He noted that Peterson has a shady rep and is a convicted felon.
The rapper’s lawyer, Andrew Brettler, denied Peterson’s defamation allegations, in June.
He said that Peterson “is an adjudged liar, a convicted felon with a lengthy rap sheet for crimes involving dishonesty and violent assault, and has a reputation for being unscrupulous” according to court docs obtained by TMZ. He added that it would be impossible for T.I. and Tiny to further damage Peterson’s reputation.
The judge found that Peterson had shown ‘probability of prevailing’ in her claims against the hip hop duo after they both denied the claims on social media.
“Therefore, the only defamatory statements in contention here are the Harrises’ comments surrounding the accusation that Peterson was lying about the gun to the head threat,” the judge stated.
Peterson was also able to back up her invasion of privacy, intentional and negligent interference with prospective economic advantage, and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress allegations against Shekinah Anderson.
Anderson accused Peterson of recruiting women for T.I. and Tiny, and of having a threesome with the couple, during a January Instagram Live chat session.
“Here, Anderson attempted to discredit Peterson through salacious sexual allegations, which she had no basis,” the judge said of Anderson’s allegations.
Peterson claims that she has suffered ongoing harassment amid the legal battle, which has been underway since earlier this year.
T.I., Tiny, and Shekinah Anderson have denied all allegations of wrongdoing.
Raissa Asunbo is a Content Editor at All About The Tea. She lives in Toronto, Canada and enjoys reading, watching movies, traveling and spending time with her family.