The Georgia Court of Appeals will not hear an emergency motion filed by a Rome Web site operator sued for libel. The defendant Teresa Watson entered an emergency motion to the appeals court in order to stop proceedings from going forward in Floyd County Superior Court after the Supreme Court of Georgia also declined to hear the case. The order from the appeals court said the motion did not show how a stay would “preserve the jurisdiction of an appeal or to prevent the contested issue from becoming moot.” The lawsuit revolves around a December 2007 post on the Web site by a blogger that alleged immoral activity by a Chattooga County woman, Stephanie Dennis. On Feb. 4 Judge Walter J. Matthews ruled to strike Watson’s pleadings in the case, and a judgment by default was entered in favor of the plaintiff.
A jury will be appointed to determine possible damages, but no date has been set yet. The order stated that Watson did not appear for a Jan. 27 hearing date as well as a Feb. 4 hearing in front of Matthews.
ROME NEWS TRIBUNE