A newspaper reporter who relies on information provided by an official government spokesperson may be entitled to the protection of the "fair report" privilege. In December 2010, an individual robbed $200 from the TD Bank in Waterbury, Conn. A police spokesperson, Christopher Corbett, allegedly informed Michael Puffer, a reporter for the Republican American Newspaper, that the police had arrested the plaintiff, Mark Bailey, in connection with the bank robbery, and that Bailey was on probation and had been living in a halfway house. Puffer wrote an article about the bank robbery, and Bailey sued Puffer, alleging that Puffer's article was defamatory. Puffer moved for summary judgment. To prove a prima facie case of defamation, a plaintiff must establish: 1.) the defendant published a defamatory statement that identified the plaintiff to a third person; 2.) the defamatory statement was published to a third person; and 3.) the plaintiff's reputation was injured. The defendant pled guilty to larceny, and the District Court found that there could be no defamation as a result of any inference in Puffer's article that the plaintiff was guilty. Puffer also argued that the "fair report" privilege shields reporters who rely on official sources of information. "A fair report privilege shields news organizations from defamation claims when publishing information originally based upon government reports or actions," pursuant to Burton v. American Lawyer Media, a 2002 decision of the Connecticut Superior Court. Puffer relied on and accurately conveyed information from the police department's official spokesperson, and the District Court found that he was entitled to the protection of the "fair report" privilege. 

A newspaper reporter who relies on information provided by an official government spokesperson may be entitled to the protection of the "fair report" privilege. In December 2010, an individual robbed $200 from the TD Bank in Waterbury, Conn. A police spokesperson, Christopher Corbett, allegedly informed Michael Puffer, a reporter for the Republican American Newspaper, that the police had arrested the plaintiff, Mark Bailey, in connection with the bank robbery, and that Bailey was on probation and had been living in a halfway house. Puffer wrote an article about the bank robbery, and Bailey sued Puffer, alleging that Puffer's article was defamatory. Puffer moved for summary judgment. To prove a prima facie case of defamation, a plaintiff must establish: 1.) the defendant published a defamatory statement that identified the plaintiff to a third person; 2.) the defamatory statement was published to a third person; and 3.) the plaintiff's reputation was injured. The defendant pled guilty to larceny, and the District Court found that there could be no defamation as a result of any inference in Puffer's article that the plaintiff was guilty. Puffer also argued that the "fair report" privilege shields reporters who rely on official sources of information. "A fair report privilege shields news organizations from defamation claims when publishing information originally based upon government reports or actions," pursuant to Burton v. American Lawyer Media, a 2002 decision of the Connecticut Superior Court. Puffer relied on and accurately conveyed information from the police department's official spokesperson, and the District Court found that he was entitled to the protection of the "fair report" privilege. 

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