Sammy Hagar Ducks Suit From Former Flame

     (CN) – Sammy Hagar’s autobiography did not defame a former Playboy bunny who claimed to have had his illegitimate child, a federal judge ruled.
     The woman is named only as Jane Doe in court documents, and the purported reference to her Hagar’s 2011 autobiography, “Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock,” does not identify her beyond saying that she was a “former Playboy bunny from California.”
     Doe, who is not actually from California, said the book libelously portrays her as having seduced the Van Halen singer after a 1988 concert in Michigan and implies that she lied about the pregnancy as an apparent extortion attempt.
     The federal complaint in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, says Doe’s baby died shortly after birth, and that she ultimately received $7,000 from Hagar to keep the affair private. In his book, Hagar said that he believed either Doe never had a baby or “may have had an abortion early on.”
     Doe claimed Hagar’s book violated the settlement and confidentiality agreement they had regarding the child. She sought actual and punitive damages for negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress, invasion of privacy, and defamation.
     U.S. District Judge Linda Reade instead granted Hagar summary judgment and closed the case last week, emphasizing that she is not named in the book.
     Furthermore, Doe had been living in Michigan in the 1980s and is now a resident of Iowa.
     “The court finds that the statements in ‘Redcontain nothing more than a vague reference to Hagar’s relationship with Doe,” Reade wrote. “While the agreement explicitly prohibits Doe from disclosing her belief that Hagar is the father of the child, the only provision in the agreement prohibiting Hagar from disclosing anything is the confidentiality provision, which refers only to the agreement and the terms of the agreement – not the underlying circumstances. In addition, as discussed above, the only individuals who would understand that the statements in ‘Red’ refer to Doe are those who had knowledge of the relationship between Doe and Hagar prior to reading ‘Red.’ Thus, it is difficult to conceive of how the statements at issue could violate the confidentiality provision. Therefore, the court finds that Hagar did not breach the agreement because, although the statements at issue acknowledge that Doe claimed Hagar was the father of her child and that Hagar paid Doe money while she was pregnant, Hagar did not disclose the agreement or the terms of the agreement.”
     Hagar was one of rock ‘n’ roll’s biggest acts in the 1970s and 1980s. Some of his biggest solo hits were “There’s Only One Way to Rock,” “Your Love is Driving Me Crazy” and “I Can’t Drive 55.”
     In 1985, he joined Van Halen. With Hagar as the band’s front-man, Van Halen produced four multiplatinum, No. 1 Billboard chart albums between 1985 and 1996.

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