Frank Ocean was on the receiving end of a lawsuit earlier in the year. The lawsuit didn’t have to do with his music but a much more personal issue. The singer got sued by his father, Calvin Cooksey, after Frank posted something on Tumblr which recalled his father’s alleged use of homophobic language when he was a child. His father later sued him in a defamation lawsuit for $14.5 million in damages which he claimed lost him “future financial opportunities in film and music.” Today, news broke that the singer has beat the case.
Frank Ocean reportedly beat a libel lawsuit Cooksey filed against him, according to Law360. The judge sided with Ocean on the case during a daylong bench trial. The judge said Cooksey failed to prove that his son defamed him in the 2016 Tumblr post where he allegedly used a homophobic slur against a transgender waitress. U.S. District Judge, Stephen V. Wilson, said the ruling wasn’t based on whether the statement was truthful but rather on Cooksey’s failure to bring the required proof to make his defamation claim. Frank’s lawyer, Keith Bremner, confirmed the ruling to Pitchfork.
“It was a super sad case” Bremner told them, “I am sorry that my client had to go through this and am glad that we could bring closure.”
The quote that Ocean was being sued over, recalled the last time he saw his father.
He said, “I was six years old when I heard my dad call our transgender waitress a faggot as he dragged me out a neighborhood diner saying we wouldn’t be served because she was dirty. That was the last afternoon I saw my father and the first time I heard that word, I think, although it wouldn’t shock me if it wasn’t.”
The statement followed the Orlando nightclub shooting in 2016 that left 50 people dead. Ocean’s response wasn’t focused on targeting his father but rather to provide context to his own experience with homophobia, even at that age.
The judge is reportedly set to deliver a full written statement on the case later this week.