Appeals court: No libel, but Phil Williams may have painted judge in false light

The Tennessee Court of Appeals on Wednesday ruled that NewsChannel 5 investigative reporter Phil Williams may have painted General Session Judge Dan Eisenstein in a false light in a 2010 story questioning the hiring of an unlicensed psychologist for Mental Health Court. But, writes Pierce Greenberg, the court said Williams did not libel Eisenstein in his reporting. The false-light claims will be resolved in Davidson County Circuit Court. Check out the full opinion here.

The Court of Appeals also singled out Williams’ style of reporting. After receiving a “no comment” from Eisenstein on the way to his car, Williams said in the broadcast that Eisenstein “Still ... had nothing to say.” Eisenstein maintained that he released statements through his lawyer, which were also used in the broadcast.