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Slander questions

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Hi. This is a bit complicated, so please bear with me.

My sister-in-law (husband's brother's wife) has been indicted on a charges of rape and gross sexual imposition for having sex with a 10-yr-old boy she was babysitting. Here are the links to the news stories:



My husband and I know she admitted to her husband that she was "in love" with this boy and that she needs help. We think she's sick and we want nothing to do with her or with him because he's covering up for her. They have run from the media and are now living in our town and sending their kids to my son's school. (She is free on bond until the trial.) We do NOT want her living here and we've told them if they don't move, we'll let everyone know about her arrest and indictment. They say if we tell, they'll get us for slander. I say it's public knowledge, and letting people know about the news isn't slander. What's the truth?

Now, to make things worse, the rest of the family is supporting her and trying to cover things up. They are angry with me and my husband for not wanting her here and threatening to speak up. They have now threatened to start a rumor about me that I am a drug dealer/addict, which is completely untrue. I don't do drugs and my husband and I don't even drink. In the past, we used to go out every Thursday night and have some drinks, but we haven't done even that in at least 2 years. Neither one of us does drugs. The way I understand it, that IS slander! Would I have a case against them if they pass around a false rumor about me out of spite? We're in the state of Ohio.

Thank you!

[Edited by Nikita_33 on 05-03-2001 at 11:16 AM]


Senior Member
I fully understand your disgust with this situation, but unless she is a fugitive or you have direct first-hand knowledge of facts relevant to the case, stay out of it.

The fact that you made it a point to note that they are "sending their kids to my son's school" is particularly telling. Unless this is a communicable disease (it isn't), why are you even concerned about the children going to school? It seems to me that you are butting into something that is not your business and by continuing to impose yourself into their problems is going to cause you more and more problems in the long run.

Leave this alone and, if you find that you cannot be supportive of your sister-in-law and her problems, keep out of it.

And after reading (and hearing) the information that you linked to, your concerns of others trying to cover this up just can't be supported. In fact, the MSNBC report was very specific in that she was caught "in the act". This makes it very hard for me to believe your claims that family members are trying to cover this up. Further proof to me that you have some other agenda in mind, other than contempt.

To literally answer your questions; yes, if you tell the truth about someone, no matter how horrific, you are protected from defamation. And if they tell falsehoods about you, they MIGHT be subject to defamation.

Summary, as my grandmother use to say... "Keeping track of yourself is a 24 hour a day job, if you spend time minding someone elses business, yours is going astray!". Stay out of their business, you have no justification for any action on your part!

[Edited by Halket on 05-07-2001 at 12:10 AM]


My only agenda is getting her out of our community and I'll make no apologies. If you'll reread what I wrote, you'll see that I said we do not want HER living here and being around the kids at school. My point in mentioning her kids going to my son's school was to show that she will be in contact with the rest of the children at the school.


Senior Member
Who is the 'we' that you refer to?? How many people were involved in this decision process to decide who 'we' want to have in 'our' community.

I think that this is YOUR problem. In fact, your post even said that "the rest of the family is supporting her... ", so that eliminates some of the 'we'.

Now, until you can show us that this is not just a problem that you and your husband(?) have in her sending her kids to 'your' school, my reply stands.... mind your own business!!
If this is such a big problem to you, why don't you move away and send your kids to a 'safe' school? That way you will be helping yourself and your community.

Butt out and mind your own business, it sounds like this lady and her family have more than enough problems already without your adding more on. And this problem of not allowing this problem to 'go the course' is YOURS, not anyone elses.


I came here to get answers to my slander questions, not dimestore psychology. I'm waiting to hear from someone who can answer in a professional and courteous manner, not with snide and cynical remarks.


Please don't wase my time with a reply. Your attitude convinces me that you are just a poser looking for attention.

mary ray

I agree with your assessment. To answer your question if they are spreading these rumors about you and your spouse and it in fact damages your reputation then you would have a cause of action.


Halket really needs to take "sensitivity training". He was quite rude to me at my post and wasn't reading fully what I was writing. He never answered my questions and took great pleasure in taking "jabs" at me. I would ignore him and speak to a real lawyer. I thought he was just being rude to me, but obviously he is a serial ">insert word I can't/shouldn't write here<".


He did the same with me on my other threads that I had asked about the Private investigator and restraining order, he told me basically to ingored the stalker.I took a beating from him too.in case you are wondering it's headed on Private investigator/restraining order issue which would be the next page of all other threads posted.


This certainly is an ugly situation. However, you do not have a right to tell her to move. People (even convicted sex-offenders who have served time)have the right to live whereever they choose. But it is my understanding that once a person becomes a convicted sex-offender the new town "public" - of where this person chooses to live - must be informed.

I know this bc there is a "reformed" pediaphile(sp) in my neighborhood. No one is happy that this man lives in our neighborhood, but we don't have the right to force him to move - without overstepping our "legal" boundries. to protect our kids, we have formed a townwatch group that conducts monthly meetings and periodically, the state troopers speak to the children on inappropriate touching. I would suggest contacting your township supervisors and discuss forming a townwatch. Education on the "whole subject" to the kids is key. And watching. If neighbors see young boys going into her house, get them out fast!

For your sake, I do agree with Halket that you should not point fingers bc you could be hit with a slander suit.

Even though she is obviously guilty, she has not yet been convicted. Who knows what type of defense her atty will present.


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