CBS anchor sued for falsely accusing school police officer of sexual abuse

By Jim Boyle | Nov 18, 2014

A high school police officer says his reputation has been severely damaged after CBS-3

Philadelphia news anchor Chris May reported that he had been fired over sexual abuse allegations, according to a libel suit filed at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas.

Howard Rubin, of Philadelphia, seeks damages in excess of $50,000 on six counts including defamation, invasion of privacy and negligence against May and CBS Broadcasting, Inc.

Rubin worked as a security officer at the Multi-Cultural Academy Charter School in Philadelphia until the school terminated his contract for the 2014-2015 school year. According to the Sept. 29, 2014 news report broadcast at 6 p.m. on CBS-3 by May, the reason the school did not renew the contract was because Rubin had been accused of sexually abusing a minor boy, with Rubin's name and photograph shown on screen. The story also ran for three days on the station's website, the lawsuit states.

The problem with the report, according to the lawsuit, was that it was completely false. One day after the broadcast, CBS-3 retracted the story and issued an apology to the school principal, but not to Rubin.

"As a result of the false and defamatory statement being published by CBS Broadcasting Inc., made in reckless disregard of or with actual knowledge of its falsity, plaintiff Howard Rubin has sustained harm to his reputation and loss of standing in the community," the suit says.

The false claim was reckless, outrageous, willful and malicious and caused the casual viewer to believe that Rubin had been involved in sexual misconduct, the suit says.

Rubin is represented by Derek Steenson.

The case ID is 141101515.

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