George Floyd's Family to File $250 Million Lawsuit Against Kanye West for Defamatory 'Drink Champs' Comments

The suit sees Floyd's daughter, represented jointly by two firms, seeking $250 million in damages.

After Kanye "Ye" West's appearance on a recent episode of Revolt TV's Drink Champs, the family of George Floyd announced their intention to file a lawsuit against the rapper, his business partners, and associates for "harassment, misappropriation, defamation and infliction of emotional distress." The suit is seeking $250 million in damages.

In a statement released on Tuesday, it was revealed that Roxie Washington, acting on behalf of her minor child -- the sole beneficiary of Floyd's estate -- has retained the Witherspoon Law Group and Dixon & Dixon Attorneys at Law to file the suit. The attorneys for Floyd's family sent a cease-and-desist letter to West after he made false claims about Floyd’s death on the podcast hosted by N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN.

West falsely claimed that Floyd died from a fentanyl overdose, and not from former officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on his neck. While a nonlethal amount of fentanyl was found in Floyd's system, medical examiner Dr. Andrew Baker testified that the cause of death was formally determined to be the compression and restraining of his body by officers. 

Additionally, in pleading guilty to violating Floyd's civil rights, Chauvin admitted for the first time that he kept his knee on Floyd's neck -- even after he became unresponsive -- resulting in his death. The former officer admitted he willfully deprived Floyd of his right to be free from unreasonable seizure, including unreasonable force by a police officer. He was sentenced to 22.5 years for Floyd's death and 21 years for violating his civil rights, which he will serve simultaneously.

"The interests of the child are priority. George Floyd's daughter is being retraumatized by Kanye West's comments and he's creating an unsafe and unhealthy environment for her," said attorney Nuru Witherspoon, partner at The Witherspoon Law Group.

Echoing the sentiment, attorney Kay Harper Williams, partner at The Witherspoon Law Group, added, "Free Speech Rights do not include harassment, lies, misrepresentation, and the misappropriation of George Floyd's legacy. Some words have consequences and Mr. West will be made to understand that."

The Drink Champs episode in question has since been removed from distribution but clips can still be seen promoted on the show's social media pages. In a statement shared with Complex on Tuesday, a Drink Champs rep said the episode had been removed due to "false and hurtful information" on Floyd's murder.

"Drink Champs prides itself on its ability to allow a free flow of ideas within the hip hop community. That being said, unfortunately, the recent interview with Kanye West contained false and hurtful information regarding the circumstances surrounding the murder of George Floyd," the rep said. "Integrity is very important and we don't want to promote false narratives on our platform. Our goal is to celebrate the culture. Therefore, we had no choice but to remove the episode from distribution. We apologize to the family of Mr. Floyd and anyone else hurt by this episode."

The podcast was the latest in a string of anti-Black and anti-Semitic behavior from West, which has led to him being locked out of his social media accounts following a series of offensive posts and jabs at everyone from Kim Kardashian to Gigi Hadid to Hailey Bieber, as well as Vogue editor Gabriella Karefa-Johnson and others.


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