(By Paul Seaburn for Mysterious Universe)
While Bigfoot may be losing in the court of public opinion and the court of reality television, it has survived to fight another day in the court of British Columbia. In a case involving a sasquatch hunter who filed suit against the provincial government for damaging his livelihood and credibility by its “non-recognition of sasquatch,” a judge on the B.C. Supreme Court ruled this week to reserve his decision and will provide it in writing at a later date. “Reserved his decision” is better than a “No!” or a “NFW!” and certainly better than “Take this frivolous lawsuit and stick it up your sasquatch!” Will Bigfoot get its day in court?
This case has gone on for some time and even crossed the border into the U.S. In October 2017, Bigfoot hunter Todd Standing released his feature film documentary, “Discovering Bigfoot,” which contained interviews with numerous Bigfoot experts and researchers and alleged footage of the creature. At the same time, Standing filed his lawsuit, demanding a 3-month wilderness investigation which he would lead that he promised would reveal the existence of Bigfoot so that the government could accept it and, of course, help his movie sales.
Standing had trouble getting a court date in Canada, so he crossed the border and filed a similar suit in California with U.S. Bigfoot researcher Claudia Ackley and managed to get a court date in March 2018. In the case of Bigfoot versus the State of California, the court ruled in favor of … well, the court didn’t have to rule. Ackley’s lawyers advised her to withdraw the suit because it was poorly written and would probably lose.
This news must not have made it back to Canada (have they stopped watching the U.S. media completely?) because Standing’s case there made it to Justice Kenneth Ball, who heard Ministry of Attorney General articled student Marina Goodwin state that “There is no reasonable claim because the claim lacks an air of reality” and The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development denial that Standing has suffered any of the financial losses described in the lawsuit. In response, Standing’s attorney Troy Hunter (a great name for a Bigfoot lawyer) promised that, if Judge Ball allowed the case to proceed to a trial, “compelling and substantial” evidence of Bigfoot would be presented – enough to convince the court to allow the investigation for three months in a “known sasquatch habitat” in Canada.
Who will win? Standing is confident because “I have DNA. How can you defend against that?” but that wasn’t enough in California. Perhaps the chance to go down in the history books might appeal to Judge Ball.
“But, I mean, come on, is it not the discovery of the millennium to find a primate species in North America? If I’m right, this is the discovery of the millennium and it’s not wasting anyone’s time. This is an extremely important issue.”
Is it? Is this really a case about Bigfoot or about money? We await the judge’s decision … and the one after that … and the one after that …