Decide declares courtroom proceedings abusive in TI & Tiny lawsuit in opposition to toy makers
The judge presides ti and his wife Tameka “Tiny” Harris‘s lawsuit against a toy manufacturer was declared a mistrial after the jury heard a woman testify “I didn’t want to support a company that steals African Americans and their ideas.”
The lawsuit filed against MGA Entertainment alleges that the toy company stole her daughter’s likeness for her LOL Surprise Dollz toy line, in what the woman in question called cultural appropriation.
Zonnique Pullins, TI’s stepdaughter, was previously part of the girl rap group OMG Girlz, whose likeness bears a chilling resemblance to the aforementioned dolls. The shadow room previously reported.
The jury listens as a woman makes biased comments in rapper TI’s lawsuit against a toy company
On Wednesday, senior U.S. District Judge James V. Selna declared mistrial and agreed with an argument by MGA attorneys.
“I didn’t want to support a company that steals African Americans and their ideas,” the woman was heard saying.
Judges in @MGAEnt v. @Tip heard from a woman who said she stopped buying OMG Dolls because “I didn’t want to support a company that was stealing African Americans and their ideas.”
Today a judge therefore declared a mistrial and agreed with the reasoning of the MGA lawyers. pic.twitter.com/51LXV8gFBO
— Meghann Cuniff (@meghanncuniff) January 25, 2023
According to court documents obtained by crime reporter Meghann Cuniff, Judge Selna viewed the woman’s testimony regarding cultural appropriation as a “rage” damaging to the defendants, in this case MGA Entertainment.
The rapper’s attorney is trying to get the judge to reconsider, claiming the woman’s testimony won’t help her case
TI’s attorney, Erin Ranahan, tried to get Judge Selna to reconsider, claiming the testimony was unhelpful to her case.
“We just didn’t want this topic in front of this jury. This isn’t Los Angeles. There is not a single black man on the jury.”
The rapper and his wife are suing a toy manufacturer for using his stepdaughter’s likeness in a line of dolls they claim ripped off her look when they worked in the rap group OMG Girlz.
Upcoming in federal court in Santa Ana, California: Rapper TI and his wife Tameka “Tiny” Harris will go to court to defend the intellectual property rights of former girl rap group OMG Girlz in a lawsuit with toymaker MGA Entertainment. pic.twitter.com/5yTN39AXHA
— Meghann Cuniff (@meghanncuniff) January 5, 2023
In April 2022, Pullins accused the doll company’s LOL Dolls of plagiarizing the aesthetic of OMG Girlz, a group she was with in her teens. Nick Fenley of The Shade Room was writing for Blavity at the time.
The Harris family was in the midst of a lawsuit defending the intellectual property rights of former girl rap group OMG Girlz, reports Cuniff.
The lawsuit has “major cultural misappropriation, racism issues that will be considered in litigation,” Reporter says
In an Instagram post Zonnique published in April, she polled her followers on the matter, letting them choose between “Hope you got paid” and “No, don’t see (the resemblance)”.
About 95 percent of respondents sided with Pullins.
Tameka “Tiny” Harris and TI attend the Living My Best Life comedy Special Atlanta Premiere at Traffik Kitchen and Cocktails on June 3, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage)
The trial itself will revolve around MGA’s LOL Dolls and whether or not they violate OMG Girlz. The doll maker was actually the first to file a lawsuit back in 2020, but now TI and Tiny are going on the offensive with a counterclaim.
Cuniff reports that the lawsuit has “major cultural embezzlement and racism issues being considered in litigation, among other pretrial issues,” she tweeted.
It is unclear when a new trial will begin.