Frank Ocean has won the libel case brought forward against him by his father.
Ocean’s estranged dad Calvin Cooksey had sued the singer for defamation and $14.5 million (£11.25 million) in damages in response to a note that Ocean posted on his Tumblr in June 2016 during the aftermath of the Orlando nightclub shooting.
In the note, Ocean had written: “I was six years old when I heard my dad call our transgender waitress a faggot as he dragged me out a neighbourhood 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.”
Cooksey denied the accusation of homophobia in his complaint and argued that Ocean’s note had “ruined” his “future financial opportunities in the film and music industries.” He also accused Ocean of publishing “falsehoods” for “the financial success” of his recent album ‘Blonde’, further describing him as “a fraud [who] only cared about making millions of dollars”.
Now it has been reported that US District Judge Stephen V Wilson ruled on Tuesday (October 17) that Cooksey “had failed to meet necessary elements to make his defamation claim”, with the report stating that “the court doesn’t have to rule whether the statement was truthful”. The judge reportedly declared: “Based upon other deficiencies in the plaintiff’s case, the judgment has to be for the defendant”
Ocean’s attorney Keith Bremer confirmed the news to Pitchfork, adding that a full written decision from the judge is expected later this week. “It was a super sad case,” Bremer said in a statement. “I am sorry that my client had to go through this and am glad that we could bring closure.”
Ocean’s fractious relationship with his father has been well documented. In 2012 the singer said Cooksey wanted to sue him for $1 million.