California readers may remember former professional wrestler Jesse Ventura. Many will also know him for his role as a governor, where he gained mixed reviews for a governing style that many categorize as 'hotheaded.' Ventura is no longer a governor, and is making headlines over a defamation lawsuit filed against a former Navy Seal.
The suit was brought on by a book written by Chris Kyle, a former Seal and sniper. Inside the book, Kyle recounts a California bar fight with a man he calls 'Scruff Face.' The fight allegedly broke out following criticisms made against the President of the United States, the war and America in general. While the book does not identify Ventura as 'Scruff Face,' in later interviews Kyle openly admitted that it was Ventura he was writing about in that chapter of his book.
Ventura filed a defamation suit, which was making its way through the federal court system when Kyle was murdered by a Marine reservist whom he was trying to mentor. After taking the young man to a firing range, Kyle was shot and killed. The book is currently being made into a feature film, and Kyle's widow recently confirmed that she will act as executor of his estate.
Ventura has filed a motion to allow the defamation lawsuit to continue, with Kyle's wife assuming his role in the legal proceeding. Ventura claims that he has suffered substantial damage to his reputation as a result of the book. Attorneys for Mrs. Kyle claim that those assertions are not valid. As this case moves forward, many in California and across the nation will watch to see how it plays out. Some may also wonder if 'Scruff Face' will make an appearance in the movie version of Kyle's story.
Source: StarTribune.com, "Former MN Gov. Ventura wants to add widow to suit against Navy SEAL Chris Kyle," Jean Hopfensperger, May 30, 2013