What can I do if a police department is slandering my name?

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What can I do if a police department is slandering my name?

I just saw a photo of myself of a police department’s facebook page saying that I was involved in a theft of less than 100 at a local store. I called the police department and told them who I$ was and wanted the post down. The officer said i would have to come in before he could do that. I said that I could come in now but he said he was getting off soon so i need to wait until tomorrow. So I asked if there was a warrant or if I was being charged and he said not at this time. Isnt this slander? Can they legally ruin my reputation if there is no charge?

Asked on February 7, 2017 under Criminal Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Defamation is publically or to other people (including online) making a false factual statement which damages your reputation. If they claimed you were charged or arrested when you were not, that would be defamation, and you could potentially sue. You however write that they said you were "involved"--that does not require that you be charged. It requires only that you were in some way "involved" in the theft to be true. Since truth is a defense to a defamation claim (i.e. the truth is not defamation, no matter how damaging it may be), if you were in some way involved, you would not be able to successfully sue for defamation, though you may be able to if you were not in any way involved in it.


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