(CN) – Five North Carolina police officers lost their challenge of a court order dismissing some of their claims against rapper “The Game,” who allegedly slandered them in the fallout from a mall scuffle between police and the rapper’s entourage.
Jayceon “The Game” Taylor was at the Four Seasons Mall in Greensboro, N.C., before a concert when security guards told one of his entourage to stop filming without permission. He refused.
The security officer called police, sparking a war of words. The rapper refused to leave, and a crowd gathered to support him. The police dispersed the crowd with pepper spray and arrested The Game for disorderly conduct, trespass and communicating threats.
Taylor and his associates produced a DVD of the incident, with footage of what they described as “The Game being wrongfully arrested and brutalized by the Police in North Carolina.”
The footage appeared on YouTube, and an advertisement for the DVD appeared on stopsnitchinstoplyin.com.
The police officers sued The Game and his entourage for slander and libel, based on the DVD ad and Taylor’s post-bail statement to the press: “They really kicked our (censored) … I gotta bring up a case against the Guilford Police Department. I gotta do it, man. It’s unfair. Their behavior’s unfair.”
The trial court dismissed some of the officers’ slander and libel claims, prompting an appeal, which the appellate panel dismissed as interlocutory, meaning it jumped the gun before a final decision was made.
The officers argued that the trial court’s order should be reviewed immediately, because it could lead to inconsistent verdicts.
“Although the facts involved in the claims remaining in the trial court may overlap with the facts involved in the claims that have been dismissed, plaintiffs have failed to show that they will be prejudiced by the possibility of inconsistent verdicts in the two separate proceedings,” Judge Steelman wrote.