Burke v. Does 1-10, No. 2012-ca-7525 (DC Superior Court)
Importance: In the first case involving a special motion to quash under the DC anti-SLAPP statute, the DC Court of Appeals held that the denial of a special motion to quash is immediately appealable.
Summary: Burke alleged that two Wikipedia editors defamed her by editing her Wikipedia profile to state that she had engaged in prosecutorial misconduct, and sought to discover their identities. One of the editors filed a special motion to quash the subpoena in order to remain anonymous. The DC Superior Court denied the motion.
On appeal, the DC Court of Appeals held: (a) the denial of a special motion to quash under the DC anti-SLAPP statute was immediately appealable under the collateral order doctrine; and (b) the special motion to quash should have been granted because the lawsuit arose from speech within the statute’s scope and Burke had not demonstrated a likelihood of success on the merits because she could not show that the defendant made the edits with actual malice.
- Burke Complaint filed in DC Superior Court (filed on September 19, 2012)
- Doe anti-SLAPP brief (filed December 10, 2012)
- Burke opposition brief (filed December 21, 2012)
- Doe reply brief in support of his anti-SLAPP motion (filed January 4, 2013)
- Superior Court Opinion denying anti-SLAPP motion (filed January 30, 2013)
- Burke motion to dismiss appeal (filed February 28, 2013)
- Doe opposition to Burke motion to dismiss appeal (filed March 12, 2013)
- Burke reply brief in support of her motion to dismiss appeal (filed March 15, 2013)
- Doe DC Court of Appeals opening brief (filed October 7, 2013)
- Burke DC Court of Appeals opposition brief (filed November 6, 2013)
- Doe DC Court of Appeals reply brief (filed December 2, 2013)
- DC Court of Appeals Opinion reversing trial court and holding that special motion to quash should have been granted (dated May 29, 2014)
- Another Case Tests Whether Denial of Anti-SLAPP Motion Can Be Immediately Appealed (posted November 14, 2013)
- DC Court of Appeals Holds that Denial of Motion to Quash Under DC Anti-SLAPP Statute Is Immediately Appealable (posted May 30, 2014)