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A man named Denton Loudermill Jr. from Olathe, Kansas, is suing U.S. Rep. Tim Burchett of Tennessee after false accusations were made against him in social media posts following a deadly shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl rally. Loudermill was briefly handcuffed during the chaos that followed the shooting, but he was not involved in the incident and is not among those charged. The lawsuit alleges that Burchett’s remarks were highly offensive, derogatory, and defamatory. Loudermill is seeking over $75,000 in damages as a result of the false accusations.

The shooting outside Union Station in Kansas City on February 14 killed a well-known DJ and injured more than 20 others, including children. Loudermill was not detained, cited, or arrested in connection with the shooting. After the chaos subsided, police stopped Loudermill as he tried to leave the area, handcuffed him, and placed him on a curb, where onlookers began taking pictures and posting on social media. Loudermill was ultimately allowed to leave the scene, but the false accusations by Burchett had already spread widely and caused significant harm to Loudermill’s reputation and well-being.

Loudermill, who was born and raised in the U.S., was not involved in the shooting and did not know any of the individuals involved. Despite this, Burchett falsely identified him as one of the shooters in a social media post, claiming he was an illegal alien. A subsequent post by Burchett attempted to correct the “illegal alien” identification but still identified Loudermill as one of the shooters. These false assertions were reposted and widely circulated, reaching over 1 million people worldwide, leading to death threats and significant emotional distress for Loudermill.

The lawsuit describes Loudermill as a car wash employee and a contributing member of his African-American family with deep roots in his community. The false accusations made by Burchett have caused Loudermill to experience anxiety, agitation, and sleep disruption as a result of the death threats and backlash he faced due to the incorrect information spread about him. The lawsuit seeks damages for the harm caused to Loudermill’s reputation, emotional well-being, and livelihood as a result of the false accusations made by Burchett on social media.

Burchett, a Republican serving his third term in Tennessee, has not commented on the pending litigation. The representative’s office has stated that they do not comment on active legal matters. Loudermill’s lawsuit seeks to hold Burchett accountable for the false and defamatory statements made against him, seeking compensation for the damages caused by Burchett’s inaccurate social media posts. The case highlights the potential harm that can come from false accusations made on social media, especially when shared by public figures such as U.S. representatives.

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