Bar Heckler Sues Bristol Palin

Stephen Hanks claims Palin defamed him
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 14, 2012 10:20 AM CDT
Bar Heckler Sues Bristol Palin
This undated image released by Lifetime shows Bristol Palin and her son Tripp, during the filming of her series, "Bristol Palin: Life's A Tripp."   (AP Photo/Lifetime, Richard Knapp)

Stephen Hanks, who famously heckled Bristol Palin in a Los Angeles bar while she was filming her reality show, may have apologized … but now he's suing over her "outrageous" conduct. Hanks, a talent manager, says he never gave permission to be filmed, and is suing Palin and Lifetime—which is including video of the incident in Life's a Tripp, premiering Tuesday—for defamation, claiming he suffered emotional distress and invasion of privacy when Palin asked him if he was gay.

Palin said the incident was partly to blame for why she left LA and returned to Alaska, but Hanks claims she had already bought her new Alaska home at the time—and thus further defamed him by blaming their exchange for her departure. His lawyer tells Reuters that Hanks attempted to communicate with Lifetime's parent company A&E about using the footage, but got no response. Hanks wants unspecified damages; his lawyer says the amount is more than $75,000. Click to relive the bar encounter. (Read more Bristol Palin stories.)

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