GamePolitics has confirmed that lawyers representing Take-Two Interactive, publisher of Bully, are seeking to have Jack Thompson declared in contempt of court.
Although we haven’t yet seen the motion, the request would appear to relate to Thompson’s angry comments in the wake of Miami District Court Judge Ronald Friedman’s refusal to block sales of Bully.
In a worst-case scenario for Thompson, the outspoken attorney could be jailed by Judge Friedman if he were ruled in contempt.
However, a knowledgeable legal source has told GamePolitics that options such as fines, judicial admonishment or censure are more likely.
Attorneys for Philadelphia law firm Blank-Rome, long a target of Thompson’s ire, filed what is known as a “Petition for Order to Show Cause.” The motion requests that Judge Friedman order Thompson to appear in court and show cause as to why he should not be held in contempt.
For his part, Thompson has reacted to the motion with typical bluster, directing his comments towards opposing counsel as well as the judge. Here are excerpts from recent e-mails cc’d to GamePolitics:
‘You want to play hardball…? You want to try to throw me in jail? You have no idea what you are unleashing in doing this. You’re at the brink…”
“If this court in any fashion proceeds toward issuing a show cause order, given its utter baselessness and the bad faith goo in which it slithers, then Thompson will add whatever judge should do so as a defendant in the aforementioned federal civil rights action…”
UPDATE: A number of sites have linked to this story today, but not all of them have gotten it right. Thompson has NOT been found in contempt. Take-Two’s attorneys are requesting that Judge Friedman hold a hearing on the matter to see whether he should be held in contempt.