In keeping with the forethought and forgiveness that has characterized absolutely everything about this story, the Florida couple who found themselves under siege after Spike Lee retweeted their home address—under the misguided belief it belonged to Trayvon Martin’s killer George Zimmerman, and that inciting mob justice was the best response to a tragic act of vigilante violence—have filed a lawsuit against the director, seeking more than $15,000 in damages. Lee made amends both publicly and privately shortly after the incident, and ultimately settled with Elaine and David McClain out of court for an undisclosed amount of money, an apology that Mrs. McClain said demonstrated “he felt really bad about it,” and hopefully, a coupon redeemable for one Spike Lee siccing of the Internet on a home of their choosing, no questions asked.
But settlements and Spike Lee’s remorse can only provide so much comfort. The tweet began recirculating over the summer during Zimmerman’s trial, prompting police surveillance over the house and, at one point, a pizza delivered to them under the name “Zimmerman.” Today the McClains say they “still have trouble sleeping and are anxious and fearful,” while the market value of their house has dropped due to the publicity around it (and, presumably, the cop cars around it). So they’re suing Lee in a case that was moved to federal court last month, where they hope to at last get the appropriate dollar amount of justice they seek for their many months of living under fear and unasked-for pizzas. To aid them, Spike Lee has tweeted the address of his mall’s local food court.
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