Blogger sues gay basher claiming retaliation for online trash talk

Blogger sues gay basher claiming retaliation for online trash talk
Charles Mostoller

The trials of convicted gay basher Kathryn Knott aren’t over.

Knott, 25, who is currently serving five to 10 months in prison for her role in the assault on two gay men in Center City, is now the defendant in a federal lawsuit claiming she and her fathergot a blogger fired for criticizing Knott online.

Kathleen O’Donnell, 61, has filed a lawsuit against Knott andher father Karl Knott, claiming they played a part in getting her fired after detectives from the Bucks County DA’s office visited her workplace with questions about her blog, entitled “Knotty is a tramp,” according

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O’Donnell is seeking $5 million in damages.

The Norristown woman was visited at her work by law enforcement after creating the blog, with a picture of Knott as the profile picture. She also created an account with the same name and picture on Disqus, used for online commenting on news websites, to comment on news articles about the case.

O’Donnell agreed to stop writing the blog after detectives told her she could be charged with impersonating Knott. No traces of the “Knotty is a tramp” blog or Disqus account could be found online.

She claims detectives toldher manager at Walker Parking Consultants about her actions and thatshe had made posts from her work computer,Philly.comreported.O’Donnell says her actions were protected by the First Amendment right to free speech.

Bucks County DA David Heckler deniedthathe sent detectives to O’Donnell’s work at the request ofKnott’s father, former Chalfont borough police chief and current Central Bucks County captain Karl Knott,Philly.comreported. Heckler and the detectives who questioned O’Donnell are also named defendants in the lawsuit.

Knott was charged along with Kevin Harrigan and Philip Williams of seriously injuring a gay man and roughing up his boyfriend during a random Center City encounter on Sept. 11, 2014.

Harrigan and Williams pleaded guilty and were sentenced to probation andbanned from Center City, Philadelphia.

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Only Knott elected to go to trial, and was sentenced in February. Her earliest possible release is in July.