Southern Heritage Group Files Defamation and Libel Suit Against Hillsborough County Democratic Executive Committee

In response to comments published by several individuals and groups, Save Southern Heritage – Florida (“SSH FL”) has launched a libel and defamation lawsuit that was filed this week the in Hillsborough Circuit Court.

Ione Townsend
Ione Townsend

The lawsuit names defendants as Leatrice Ione Townsend, Chairwoman of the Hillsborough County Democratic Executive Committee; the Hillsborough County Democratic Executive Committee; Organize Florida and Timothy Herberlein, Director of Political Operations for Organize Florida.

SSH FL specifically names several libelous and defamatory published remarks by the individuals and groups named in the lawsuit.

“The Democratic and Organize Florida groups deliberately and intentionally printed untrue information about our organization and they will be held accountable,” stated attorney Justin Waters, representing SSH FL.

“To print comments alleging our organization and it’s leadership to be ‘white supremacists’ and to advocating ‘violently threatening and intimidating members of the public,’ is totally unacceptable, especially in this day and time.

The lawsuit goes on to list several messages that included untrue and unfounded accusation of ‘felonious acts’ and that SSH FL spokespersons ‘promotes racism and violence,’ Waters stated.

SSH FL asserts that all comments made are false, untrue and a create a potentially violent atmosphere where radical elements may try to create violent situation against SSH FL and it’s leaders.

The Florida branch of the filed 501c3 organization was established in January 2016. According to their statement, they were formed in Florida, ” in response to three initiatives in the Florida Legislature that are part of a hate campaign led by Anti-American extremists, who refuse to respect the various cultures that make up the fabric of Florida society. Since that time, it has grown in membership and has been active in Heritage battles throughout Florida including the We’ll Remember in November Campaign that resulted in #heritagehater candidates to lose elections in Florida.”

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