Posted Monday, Jan. 28, 2013, at 4:15 PM
Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images.
Here's another one for the Only-In-Florida file: A bizarre legal fight involving two radio shock jocks has gotten that much more sensational with accusations that the law team representing one of the DJs used a so-called "honey trap" to get a lawyer on the other team arrested for drinking and driving.
Meet Bubba "The Love" Sponge Clem, currently being sued by rival Tampa Bay radio host Todd "MJ" Schnitt for defamation. Basically, Clem said some not-so-nice things on air about Schnitt's wife. It all somehow has to do with Clem's arrest and acquittal on animal cruelty charges for his show's on-air castration and slaughter of a wild boar. The ongoing trial, unsurprisingly, has been a bit of a circus.
But here's where things get even weirder. Schnitt's legal team now wants a mistrial, claiming that the DUI arrest of one of their lawyers last week was part of a setup, carried out by a paralegal from Clem's camp.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, Team Schnitt says the following series of events led to the arrest of Charles Campbell, the lead attorney on the case: While Campbell and another attorney on the case were drinking in a steakhouse after work, a "pretty" paralegal named Melissa started buying their table drinks. She allegedly declined to tell the lawyers that she works for the firm representing Clem. At the same time, a lawyer at Clem's firm called his friend, who happens to be DUI Sgt. Ray Fernandez for Tampa police, and told him there was a guy at the steakhouse who drives drunk. Tipped off, police staked out the area. A couple hours later, they arrested Campbell in Melissa's car (after she allegedly asked him to drive it for her), leaving his briefcase full of confidential documents on the Schnitt case in her backseat.
Sounds ridiculous, sure, but again, this is the Sunshine State we're talking about. Plus, when questioned about the night of the DUI incident (including whether her firm sent her to the bar on purpose), paralegal Melissa Personius pleaded the fifth. Schnitt's lawyers claim that no one opened Campbell's briefcase in the 20-odd hours it was in their possession.
Clem, incidentally, seems to have a tendency to get mired in strange legal proceedings. His former bestie Hulk Hogan sued the shock jock over a sex tape showing Clem's then wife having intercourse with with the former wrestler. They settled in October.