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Bittman v. Fox

United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division

June 1, 2015, Decided; June 1, 2015, Filed

No. 14 C 8191

Opinion

 [*898]  MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

JAMES F. HOLDERMAN, District Judge:

Plaintiff Bridget Bittman filed several alleged claims under federal and Illinois law against defendants Megan Fox, Kevin DuJan, Dan Kleinman, Adam Andrzejewki, and For the Good of Illinois.1 (Dkt. No. 34 ("Am. Compl.")) Defendants Fox and DuJan have moved to dismiss Bittman's federal claims under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (Count I) and the Stored Communications Act (Count II), as well as her state law claims for civil assault (Count VII), defamation per se (Count X), false light (Count XI), intentional infliction of emotional distress (Count XII), and injunctive relief (Count XIII) for failure [**2]  to state a claim pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). (Dkt. No. 36 ("Defs.' Mot.").) For the reasons explained below, defendants' motion is granted.

RELEVANT FACTUAL BACKGROUND

Bittman is employed by the Orland Park Public Library, where she provides marketing and public relations services. (Am. Compl. ¶¶ 17, 18.) In the fall of 2013, Megan Fox and Kevin DuJan complained that the Orland Park Public Library provided unfiltered access to the Internet and began efforts to change this policy. (Id. at ¶¶ 26, 28.) In her capacity as a representative of the Orland Park Public Library, Bittman publicly responded to defendants' complaints. (Id. at ¶ 27.)

 [*899]  Bittman alleges that as early as November 4, 2013, the Fox and DuJan began making and causing to be made numerous false and defamatory statements about her. (Id. at ¶ 35.) On May 18, 2014, Fox posted the following comments on the Fans of Megan Fox Facebook Page:

I wonder at what point in their presentation at the Hatefest that Mary Weimar and Bridget Bittman taught the other public employees in attendance [**3]  about using the police as a weapon against their perceived enemies in the "opposition." Do you know that the Orland Park Public Library Board contacted the police SIX TIMES in total to make false police complaints against me (and a few times against Kevin too)...

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107 F. Supp. 3d 896 *; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 70249 **

BRIDGET BITTMAN, Plaintiff, v. MEGAN FOX, KEVIN DUJAN, DAN KLEINMAN, ADAM ANDRZEJEWSKI, and FOR THE GOOD OF ILLINOIS, an Illinois Not for Profit Organization, Defendants.

Subsequent History: Motion granted by, Dismissed by, in part, Without prejudice Bittman v. Fox, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127272 (N.D. Ill., Sept. 23, 2015)

Motion granted by, Dismissed by Bittman v. Fox, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 63948 (N.D. Ill., May 16, 2016)

CORE TERMS

false light, allegations, posted, defamation per se, defamatory per se, defendants', authorization, defamatory, assault, injunctive relief, defamation, outrageous, floral, fruit, media, emotional distress, motion to dismiss, impersonate, damages, electronic, offensive, innocent, website, words

Civil Procedure, Pleadings, Complaints, Requirements for Complaint, Defenses, Demurrers & Objections, Motions to Dismiss, Failure to State Claim, Computer & Internet Law, Criminal Offenses, Computer Fraud & Abuse Act, Business & Corporate Compliance, Communications Law, Federal Acts, Stored Communications Act, Civil Rights Law, Protection of Rights, Privacy Rights, Electronic Communications, Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault & Battery, Elements of Assault, Defamation, Elements, Defamation Per Se, Procedural Matters, Invasion of Privacy, False Light, False Light, Remedies, Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress, Remedies, Injunctions