This drag queen was awarded $1.1 M after a blogger defamed him

This drag queen was awarded $1.1 M after a blogger defamed him

Eric Posey, who performs as a drag queen under the stage name Mona Liza Million, won his claim against blogger Summer Bushnell after she posted an edited video of the drag artist at an event in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.

The doctored video shared on social media in 2022 showed Posey dancing during a performance in June 2022 but was edited to blur out his pelvic area to make it seem as if he had exposed himself.

“Why did no one arrest the man in a dress who flashed his genitalia to minors and people in the crowd?” Bushnell wrote regarding the falsified video clip. 

“No one said anything about it and there’s video. I’m going to put up a blurred video to prove it. 

The video gained thousands of online views and even led to a police investigation. Ultimately, the unedited video showed no indecent exposure, and prosecutors declined to file charges.

A Kootenai County district court jury unanimously decided Bushnell had defamed Posey and was liable for damages. 

“The judicial system did what needed to be done,” Posey said after the verdict.

According to AP News, the jurors awarded Posey $926,000 in compensatory damages for defamation and an additional $250,000 in punitive damages. 

“The jury’s verdict demonstrates a clear message to this community that you have to be truthful,” said Wendy J. Olson, one of his attorneys.

Posey said he has faced death threats and harassment as a result of the accusations made against him. 

“Imagine being in a dark hole where you have nobody and you felt the whole world turn their back on you,” he said in court Thursday. “But somehow, you were surrounded by warriors, true people of Idaho — not transplants, true people of this soil. I am fortunate to say I have people like that around me, people that lifted me up.”

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