Former Sacramento Kings forward Richaun Holmes has settled the defamation lawsuit he filed in March against the Sacramento Bee, its parent company McClatchy, opinion writer Robin Epley, and his ex-wife regarding five articles that included allegations of domestic and child abuse.
According to the Sacramento Business Journal, there was no monetary compensation made as part of the settlement, which was announced right before a planned Thursday hearing in Sacramento County Superior Court.
Allexis Holmes accused Richaun of domestic violence and abuse of their six-year-old son in a series of Sacramento Bee articles written by Epley between March and May 2022. Allexis, who divorced Richaun in 2019, also filed for a restraining order against the NBA player on behalf of their son.
The allegations came after a Los Angeles court awarded Richaun sole physical and legal custody of his son in early 2022. Per ESPN’s James Ham, Allexis defied the court order and took their son to Georgia. There, a Georgia court ruled in Richaun’s favor and returned his son to his custody.
Holmes’ lawyer, Camille Vasquez, said in March that the “defendants intentionally, and maliciously, published claims of child and domestic abuse by Mr. Holmes despite easily accessible evidence to the contrary via public court filings.” Vasquez also called the Sacramento Bee’s actions “a coordinated and malicious effort to deliberately defame” the Kings player.
The week before the first Sacramento Bee article was published, the Kings announced that Holmes would not play for the remainder of the season due to personal reasons. He was traded to the Dallas Mavericks earlier this month.
“In her columns and editorials, Bee opinion writer Robin Epley reported fairly and truly on Mr. Holmes’ custody dispute and appropriately represented her opinion on his ex-wife’s allegations,” Bee Executive Editor Colleen McCain Nelson wrote in the email to SBJ following the news of the settlement.
[Sacramento Biz Journal]