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Update on Nancy Benoit’s family vs. Hustler



The Associated Press is reporting that the U.S. Supreme Court will not reinstate an award against Hustler Magazine over the nude photos that they published of Nancy Benoit after she was murdered by her husband Chris Benoit. The court turned away a request by the family of Nancy Benoit to reinstate a jury’s decision to make Hustler Magazine pay them almost $20 million. The decision was reduced to $250,000 later and then it was thrown out by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Hustler, in their defense, said that they did published the photos – shot over two decades prior -because they were newsworthy while Nancy’s family was arguing that they never gave any permission to the magazine to publish them.

(thanks to Colin Vassallo)

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8 Responses

  1. Con Cara says:

    I agree it was wrong to post the photos. But $20 million? Seriously? That’s obviously just out of greed.

  2. steve says:

    She had to sign a release, I bet they have it.

  3. Chris Epic says:

    Maybe they should call up Martha Hart & learn to drag this out properly…

  4. matt says:

    They definitely shouldn’t have published them right after she died. Especially when she told them 20 years ago she didn’t want them published.. i realize she willingly posed for the pics & they own the rights to them but that agreement shouldn’t be null and void because of her death. Plus its disrespectful to exploit someone’s death for profit.. kinda like the national enquirer posting postmortem pics of Whitney Houston in her casket..

    With that said, 20 million seems kinda steep 5 years later ut a jury felt strong enough to reward it at the time. Maybe they should pay all profits they made from that issue to her family. That’d be fair

  5. Scott says:

    What Con Cara said. Had they asked for much less, maybe they might have gotten it, but when you ask for 8 digits like that… No. Just no.

  6. raven12516 says:

    @Matt: She DID want them published, they just never were.

  7. AJ Starr says:

    Yeah, I think the Benoit family and Martha Hart would be great friends…. sue over everything!

    Nancy signed a model’s release before posing for those pictures. EVERY model has to do it when they do any type of nudity. The pictures become the property of the photographer, or in this case, of the company that the photographer works for.

    They have no case, because they are suing over property that doesn’t belong to them.

  8. ROB_MOR says:

    This really saddens me. Not because the family didn’t profit, but because it reminds me how my favorite wrestler of all time murdered his wife and son. Then he was scratched out of the history books. If only more people like Chris Nowinski spent time on making sense of brain trauma and brought an ill man’s legacy back to the industry.

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