A slander/libel lawsuit by the former village president of Franklin Park against the current village president has been dismissed.
Circuit Court Judge Jeffrey Lawrence dismissed the suit filed in June 2009 by Daniel Pritchett against his successor, Barrett Pedersen.
Pritchett charged that during the campaign for village president in early 2009, Pedersen made statements and created fliers "with knowledge it was false or reckless disregard for the truth," according to court papers.
Among the fliers was one released by the Pedersen campaign suggesting that Pritchett was, at best, apathetic about the planned opening of Club VIP. Club VIP featured young women dancing in bathing suits.
Pedersen's attorney argued that "significant latitude" is afforded to speech made during a political campaign and that Pritchett can't establish that Pedersen acted with actual malice.
Judge Lawrence agreed with Pedersen's attorney and dismissed the suit. He also ordered Pritchett to reimburse Pedersen for $14,000 in attorney's fees and costs.