Report: Federal judge dismisses defamation lawsuit against Jerry Jones in paternity case

A federal judge once again dismissed a defamation lawsuit, stemming from a paternity case, filed against Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and other associates.

Judge Robert W. Schroeder III for the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Texas dismissed the lawsuit Wednesday "with prejudice," which means the case cannot be filed again, according to ESPN.

Alexandra Davis, a 27-year-old woman who claims to be the daughter of the billionaire owner of the Cowboys, first filed a paternity lawsuit in March 2022 in Dallas County. Later that same month she filed a separate defamation lawsuit, alleging that Jones and two others made deliberate attempts to call her out as an "extortionist" and "shakedown artist."

Schroeder partially dismissed the defamation lawsuit in October, leading to Davis refiling that case in November. In the latest dismissal, in a 17-page order, Schroeder supported Jones' characterization of Davis, citing messages that "clearly show that Plaintiff requested money from Jones in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2021," per ESPN.

"Based on these facts alone, or viewed in combination with all the communications within their possession, it is not plausible that Defendants acted with actual malice in characterizing Plaintiff's actions as a 'shakedown attempt' that was motivated by money," Schroeder wrote in the order.

According to ESPN, Davis' attorneys, Andrew Bergman and Jay Gray, issued a statement that said they were "disappointed in the ruling and intend to appeal."

Davis' original defamation claim alleged that Jones and his associates had used reported articles to malign her character, "based knowingly on false statements and accusations." In Schroeder's original dismissal, he wrote that Jones' statements about Davis had either been accurate or "not defamatory."

The paternity case is still pending, after Dallas County Judge Sandra Jackson ruled in February that Jones must submit to a paternity test.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Jerry Jones has defamation case against him dismissed again by judge