Arnold Schwarzenegger's Former Flight Attendant Files Defamation Suit
By Raphael Chestang
Tammy and Tom Tousignant filed suit against several news outlets on July 28. The couple alleges that the organizations made false claims that she had a "love child" with the former governor.
Gawker, the National Enquirer and the Daily Mail are among those listed as defendants in the filed complaint for defamation by libel.
"Tanner Tousignant is not the illegitimate son of Arnold Schwarzenegger," the family's court documents state explicitly. The complaint goes on to allege that "the reports regarding the Tousignants are entirely false."
The Daily Mail and the National Enquirer reportedly published articles in 2003 claiming that Tammy had an extra-marital affair with Schwarzenegger resulting in the birth of her son Tanner. After Arnold's 2011 admission to fathering a child with "a former household staff member," Gawker ran a story speculating that Tanner might have been the child in question. Gawker has since published a retraction for that story, saying, "our story was wrong."
"Freedom of the press is a valuable right but it is not a license for gossipy tabloids to tar and feather innocent citizens and destroy their reputations for the rags' profit," the Los Angeles court documents state.
According to their legal papers, the plaintiffs seek an undetermined amount of compensation for damages that they "believe to be in excess of $10 million."
Tammy worked for Arnold as a flight attendant on his private plane from 1987 to 1999.
Following Arnold's confession, his former household staff member Mildred Baena came forward to admit her affair with Arnold that resulted in the birth of their son.