By Corinne Murdock |
On Thursday, a district court judge denied a mother’s motion to dismiss in a lawsuit filed against her by the creator of a dossier on parents who opposed his son’s tenure as school board president. The mother leaked the dossier, located on a Google Drive, to local reporters after noticing the URL in pictures sent to her by the school board president.
Mark Greenburg — father of the former board president of Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD) who had access to the dossier, Jann-Michael Greenburg — sued SUSD parents Amanda and Daniel Wray for allegedly violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), a federal law on unauthorized computer access. The Wrays countered by filing an anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss, which claims that a lawsuit is filed strategically to prevent public participation. Judge Douglas Rayes, an appointee of former President Barack Obama, denied the Wrays’ motion to dismiss.
Rayes said his decision was a “close call.” He acknowledged that the elder Greenburg lacked a password protection on the Google Drive, therefore making it accessible to anyone with its link. However, Rayes agreed with the elder Greenburg’s argument that this lack of security didn’t render the Google Drive dossier open to the public, and that Wray’s inadvertent discovery of the URL didn’t give her authorization to access the dossier.
The Rayes declared that the elder Greenburg “sufficiently plead the elements of a violation” of the CFAA. He established a scheduling conference on July 7 at 11 am, with a deadline for a revised proposed discovery plan on June 30.
Wray deferred to her counsel for comment.
In a statement to AZ Free News, Harmeet Dhillon — the managing partner of Dhillon Law Group representing Wray — clarified that the judge’s decision only reflected Greenburg’s allegations and didn’t constitute Rayes’ final decision on the case.
“A motion to dismiss is typically made at the outset of most cases in federal court, and it is a test not of the facts of the case, but rather of the plaintiff’s allegations,” said Dhillon. “While we respectfully disagree with the court’s ruling and believe the law requires dismissal at this stage, we look forward to the discovery phase of the lawsuit and to establishing the actual facts in this case.”