‘Storage Wars’ Lawsuit: Dave Hester Gets Go-Ahead for Wrongful Termination Claim

'Storage Wars' Lawsuit: Dave Hester Gets Go-Ahead for Wrongful Termination Claim

Judge finds that Dave Hester's wrongful termination claim is not voided by First Amendment concerns

Did former “Storage Wars” star Dave Hester get some good news from the legal system on Tuesday? Yuup.

Hester, who claims that he was fired from the A&E reality show after complaining that the show was rigged, will be allowed to go forward with his wrongful termination claim against the cable network, a judge said Tuesday.

In July, Hester was ordered to pay A&E and Original Productions — which produces “Storage Wars,” and was also named in Hester's suit — $122,692 in legal fees, after those companies prevailed in an anti-SLAPP motion, filed in March, claiming that Hester's suit violated their right to free speech.

Also read: ‘Storage Wars’ Star Ordered to Pay $122,000 in Legal Fees

However, while A&E was able to get the unfair business practices portion of Hester's lawsuit tossed, Judge Michael Johnson found in a tentative ruling that, as an employment dispute, Hester's wrongful termination claim can't be thrown out based on A&E and Original's First Amendment rights.

“Defendants’ motion is directed to Plaintiff's 1st COA [cause of action] for wrongful termination of employment. In that cause of action, Plaintiff alleges that he complained to managers and producers about practices on the ‘Storage Wars’ program, and he was fired in retaliation for his complaints,” the ruling reads. “Defendants contend that the 1st COA arises from protected activity because Plaintiff was terminated after complaining about the contents and practices of the program. This does not meet their burden to establish protected activity.”

“The 1st COA raises an employment dispute. Of course the backdrop of that dispute is a television program, but that does not place this within the anti-SLAPP statute,” the ruling continues.

Also read: ‘Storage Wars’ Star Brandi Passante Gets Pittance in Porn Video Lawsuit

Hester's attorney, Martin Singer, called A&E's argument “absurd,” adding that Hester is “looking forward to having this case decided by a jury.”

“A&E's position is that a whistleblower cannot sue a network or production company in the entertainment industry,” Singer told TheWrap in a statement Tuesday. “This position is absurd since the entertainment industry is not above the law. My client is looking forward to having this case decided by a jury.”

Hester sued in December 2012 with a bombshell complaint that alleged the show's producers plant valuable items in storage lockers, which competitors then bid on, supposedly without knowing what's inside them.

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.

  • MathProf

    If this is news to you, you have a serious personal reality issue. Reminds me of watching monkeys at the zoo-fun to watch, make fun of as they make faces, throw feces, masturbate, etc. Watching monkeys at the zoo is funny because we're watching ourselves. Watching reality TV is fun because………?

    • greth

      yeah you seems to have a position, and you certainly has one, and that is in front of the screen in the same news, so good luck monkey :)

  • Lala Rock

    Dave Hester is an ass – and a “fame” whore — there is/was nothing this guy wouldn't do for the sake of getting his 15 minutes of fame. If you look at the other SW castmates – you can see the “friendly sparring” that goes on among them with trying to outbid each other and “win a locker”. And its very evident that they have banded together to shut Hester out of the action – they detest him as much as the rest of SW followers do – he's just an ass – plain and simple. And no – he doesn't help the ratings – when he is not on a particular episode — the shows ratings are significantly much higher (Go figure). Go ahead and Google it for yourself – facts don't lie….
    And because the castmates dislike him so much and he couldn't “win” the lockers he wanted – and the ratings suffering – the only likely solution was to take him out of the show. Being a very sore loser – he sued. Now its not brain surgery taking him off the show – this happens frequently in the TV business. When a TV show has poor ratings – the producers immediatly look at the show to see who or what is dragging the ratings down – and then they take corrective action – it happens all the time in the entertainment industry!!!
    Hester's attonney, Mr. Singer, states that the entertainment industry is not above the law – he is correct but this is not about laws – this is about RATINGS – plain and simple…How many times do we see where a show is canceled or a star of a show abruptly departs the show – all in the name of RATINGS! Dave – its not rocket science…put on your big boy pants and take it like a man!
    Go ahead – do a search of Dave Hester Stores – the magnitude of terrible reviews will make a believer out of you ; And if that's not enough – check out his suit in 2011 with a rapper and Hester's use of the word”Yuup” – a real sham and HOOT!
    Dave, pack it in and crawl back to your dark cave and help us to forget your existence in the television world…

  • the_Truth_in_Oz

    Hands up those who would love to see Dave bankrupted – he is just a horrible human. I am not prone to enjoying other people's misfortune but when they put themselves out in public and behave and talk like he does it is clear that he has a lot of bad karma coming his way.

  • yojoe

    I wish people would change their minds about GOOD OLD DAVE as he is my HERO.

  • Boom Boom

    I don't mind Dave. Everyone knows the show is rigged. Every episode is the same thing. THey look through the locker saying “this is crap, this is crap, this is crap” and then all of sudden it's “wait a minute, what do we have here?” Something is always “magically” hiding in the back.

    Darrell is the biggest douche around. He says the same things every time he opens his mouth.

  • himpeck bobby

    I would love to see brandis big tits,omg I bet she has sliver dollar nipples..