Atlanta, Georgia – Former election worker Ruby Freeman expressed both gratitude and caution today following a defamation trial involving former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Freeman, who had been targeted by Giuliani’s defamatory statements along with her daughter Shaye Moss, spoke to reporters about the impact of the trial on her life.
“This has been a long and difficult journey for me and my daughter,” Freeman said. “Today is a good day, but money will never solve all of my problems.”
Freeman emphasized the fear she still experiences due to threats, stating, “I will always have to be careful about where I go and who I will be able to share my name with. I miss my name.” She shared her gratitude for the jury’s recognition of the harm caused by Giuliani’s actions, but reminded people that financial compensation cannot fully address the challenges she continues to face.
Meanwhile, Moss lamented the profound changes brought about by Giuliani’s false accusations. “The flame Giuliani lit with those lies…changed every aspect of our lives,” she revealed. Moss expressed the hope that no one else would have to endure such a difficult fight to regain their reputation, stating, “Our greatest wish is that no one…ever experiences anything like what we went through.”
Giuliani, speaking to reporters outside the court, stated his intention to appeal the decision and request a new trial. He claimed that the judge’s actions had prevented him from presenting evidence and admitted that he refrained from testifying due to concerns of being held in contempt.
During the trial, Judge Beryl Howell admonished Giuliani for making further defamatory remarks about Freeman and Moss. She warned that these comments could support additional defamation claims. As a result, Giuliani opted not to testify in the case.
As the jury announced the verdict, Giuliani displayed no emotion, while Freeman and Moss sighed with relief and exchanged smiles with their attorneys.
The jury awarded Freeman more than $16 million and Moss nearly $17 million in defamation damages. Both women were also granted $20 million each for emotional distress. In a final blow, the jury imposed $75 million in punitive damages, bringing the total award to nearly $150 million. This amount exceeded the plaintiffs’ initial request by threefold.
The trial’s verdict reflects the recognition of the harm caused by Giuliani’s unfounded statements and serves as a reminder that monetary compensation cannot fully undo the damage inflicted on Freeman and Moss. Their hope now is that their story will prevent others from enduring similar injustices in the future.