A Tennessee man is suing Kathy Griffin who was captured on video telling a boy wearing a prom dress “you look like an idiot,” he says he’s filing a federal lawsuit against her because the comedian stirred up a dangerous backlash against him and his family.
***TRIGGER WARNING*** Man accosting a member of the LGBTQ community.
Sam Johnson, a former CEO of a healthcare company, says he and his family were the subjects of online harassment after a video of the confrontation started circulating in April 2021.
@news.com.au This CEO got the sack after confronting a boy in a prom dress. #fyp #america #prom #lgbt #tennessee ♬ original sound – News.com.au
He claims Griffin’s tweets about the video caused the incident to go viral, Johnson was fired from his role as CEO of VisuWell telehealth company later that day.
Yep. This is what it means to be an LGBTQ+ ally. I will fight this suit and I will not settle. I don’t think he got fired because of me. I hope these kids are ok. 💪🌈 https://t.co/9Slm3iPZaP
— Kathy Griffin (@kathygriffin) April 28, 2022
The video was originally uploaded to TikTok by Jacob Geittmann, Stevens’s boyfriend. It shows Johnson leering at Stevens for wearing a red prom dress. Stevens yelled at the man to “(expletive) off” and leave them alone.
“I’m sorry, I’m gorgeous,” Stevens told Johnson.
“Are you?” Johnson asked with a grin.
The video then shows a woman, whom Geittmann identified as the mom of another prom attendee. The woman approaches the CEO ‘Johnson’ pleading with him to stop harassing the young man.
An additional video clip shows Johnson smacking Geittmann’s phone out of his hand.
Johnson’s lawsuit claims he “never expressed any anger, raised his voice, or threatened the prom group in any way,” and calls them an “enormous disturbance” who exhibited “loud, vulgar, and obnoxious language and behavior” before the confrontation.
“The vulgarities, including shouting, profanity, and simulated sex acts, were the worst Mr. Johnson had ever seen or heard in a public place,” the lawsuit reads.
Just over a year after the incident, Johnson tweeted that he’s filing the lawsuit to “stand up against the woke social mob that wants to strip us of our livelihoods and careers.”
I have filed a federal lawsuit against @kathygriffin in my struggle to stand up against the woke social mob that wants to strip us of our livelihoods and careers. We will fight!
— Sam Johnson (@SJohnsonTN) April 27, 2022