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Hearing on defamation suit to go forward

August 27, 2005|By PEPPER BALLARD

pepperb@herald-mail.com

HANCOCK

A scheduled Washington County Circuit Court hearing on a motion to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by a woman against three former Hancock Town Council candidates will not be changed, Circuit Judge Frederick C. Wright III ruled Thursday.

A hearing is scheduled for Nov. 15 on a motion to either dismiss the lawsuit filed June 22 by Deborah S. Cohill or seek a summary judgment, which is a ruling by a judge on the law as it applies to the case without a trial. The lawsuit is filed against Greg Yost, with Darwin Mills and Frank Courtney listed as co-defendants, records state.

Yost ran for mayor in the February election and was defeated by incumbent Daniel Murphy. Mills and Courtney lost bids for seats on the town council.

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Cohill campaigned for other candidates, according to the lawsuit.

Mills' attorney, Patrick J. Nooney, filed a motion Aug. 22 asking for a different hearing date because of a scheduling conflict. In a written ruling, Wright said the hearing can be held without Mills present.

Yost's attorney had filed the motion to dismiss the suit or seek a summary judgment.

Cohill, who was director of the Interfaith Service Coalition at the time of the filing, is asking for judgments on five counts of defamation against Yost. Mills and Courtney are included in one of those counts and listed apart from Yost in a sixth count.

Cohill is seeking monetary damages plus legal costs for each count.

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