Holistic healer wins $1 million defamation award

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — An attorney for a Twin Cities television station says a $1 million defamation award will be appealed.

A Dakota County jury awarded a holistic healer from Hudson, Wis., compensatory damages in a 2009 story aired by KSTP-TV about the woman’s treatment of a patient.

The KSTP story said naturopathy healer Susan Wahl tried to wean the patient from anti-anxiety medication and that she tried to commit suicide as a result. Wahl sued the station, claiming that records showed the patient’s medical doctor reduced the medication and that there was no proof of a suicide attempt.

KSTP attorney Paul Hannah says the station will challenge the size of the damage award in post-trial motions. He says an appeal would be based on their argument that the station was not negligent and reported both sides of the story.