Realtor Sues KYW For Defamation, Emotional Distress

By Merrill Knox 

kyw_304A Pennsylvania realtor is suing KYW for emotional distress and defamation, claiming the Philadelphia station aired a “preposterous and knowingly false story” about her, the Philadelphia Daily News reports.

The realtor, Andrea Straub, and her husband, who she is now separated from, were cited with disorderly conduct and harassment after police found surveillance video allegedly showing the pair throwing dead animals on a neighbor’s property. KYW aired the video in a report on the citation; the charges against Straub were later dropped.

The suit names anchor Chris May, reporter Walt Hunter, news director Susan Schiller and account executive Kim Papay as defendants. Straub says she lost her job and was “effectively run out of town” after the story aired:

According to the suit, filed last week in Philadelphia, house sitter Eric Welsch, who uses the Twitter handle “Gore God,” gave the station a video that showed a “blurry, yet clearly male figure” vandalizing a “For Sale” sign and placing “animal corpses” on the property.


“Anyone who knows Ms. Straub is well aware of her fear of mice and rats, making these claims that she placed dead corpses on the neighbor’s property all the more absurd,” the suit states.

Straub is friends with CBS3 reporter Lesley Van Arsdall, the suit continues. After Hunter contacted Straub for comment, she reached out to Van Arsdall, who then watched the video and told the defendants that Straub was not in it and was not involved in the incident.

“We believe our reporting was both accurate and responsible, and we will vigorously defend ourselves in this lawsuit,” a spokesperson for KYW told the Daily News.