Ohio Supreme Court Will NOT Hear Oberlin College’s Appeal — Must Pay Gibson’s Bakery Millions in Damages for Defamation

We last reported in July that Oberlin College was stalling in paying Gibson’s Bakery over $30 million after losing a defamation case. It’s now September, and the leftist institution still has not met its legal obligation to the family-owned bakery it defamed in 2016. Oberlin is accruing around $4,300 in interest each day it doesn’t pay up.

Oberlin had appealed the judgment, but the Ohio Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to hear the appeal.

Gibson’s Bakery has served the city and the school on good terms for many years. All of that changed the day a black Oberlin student tried to buy wine with a stolen ID. The store clerk, Allyn D. Gibson, the son and grandson of the late owners, David Gibson and Allyn W. Gibson, noticed two more bottles of wine hidden in the student’s jacket. Gibson took out his phone to take a photo and call the police. The student knocked the phone out of his hand, hitting him in the face. Gibson ran down the thief. Outside the store, the thief’s two friends, also college students, joined the tussle. The students were beating Gibson when the police arrived. They arrested the students.

The students not only confessed to their crimes but said they didn’t believe Gibson’s actions were motivated by race. Unfortunately, leftists didn’t care. They accused the owners of being racists and boycotted the store. Meredith Raimondo, former vice president and dean of students, protested the bakery along with the students. She claimed she was there to supervise, not to protest, but she handed out flyers designed to damage the bakery’s reputation. Students even received class credit for attending protests.

The Gibsons filed a lawsuit against the school on defamation and business interference grounds. Raimondo was also named in the lawsuit. The family-owned business WON. The jury agreed that Oberlin College libeled, slandered, and disrupted the store’s business and said the school must pay millions of dollars in damages and attorney’s fees.

Now the state’s highest court has refused to hear Oberlin’s appeal of those fees. Attorney Lee Plakas released a statement:

“On behalf of the Gibson family and the trial team, Truth Still Matters, David can still overcome Goliath. We and the Gibson family are gratified that all judges on the court of appeals and the majority of the Ohio Supreme Court recognized the rights of individuals rather than the bullying tactics of the big institutions.”

Oberlin said it was disappointed (I’ll bet) with the outcome and “remain committed to strengthening the partnership between the College, the City of Oberlin and its residents, and the downtown business community. We will continue in that important work while remaining focused on our core educational mission.”

Oberlin College can demonstrate that commitment by respecting the legal process, honoring the jury’s verdict, and paying Gibson’s Bakery damages owed.

Photo credit: Gibson’s Bakery Facebook

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