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Del. Rick Impallaria speaks at a community meeting in May. A defamation lawsuit he filed against four members of the Baltimore County Republican Central Committee was dismissed by a county judge on Thursday.
Del. Rick Impallaria speaks at a community meeting in May. A defamation lawsuit he filed against four members of the Baltimore County Republican Central Committee was dismissed by a county judge on Thursday. (David Anderson / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

A Baltimore County judge dismissed Thursday a state delegate’s defamation lawsuit against four county Republican Party officials.

Del. Rick Impallaria, a Republican who represents a district that includes parts of Baltimore and Harford counties, sued four members of the Baltimore County Republican Central Committee. Impallaria alleged he was defamed earlier this year when members discussed him during a committee meeting.

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Impallaria sued four of the members who were present: J. Michael Collins, Bradley Lang, Al Mendelsohn and Joshua Wolf.

Part of Impallaria’s case included a copy of a critical editorial from The Baltimore Sun that was discussed at the meeting, said Alexander Bush, a Rockville attorney who represents the defendants. It was headlined: “Hey 7th District, can we talk about Rick Impallaria?”

Impallaria, 56, has been in the House of Delegates since 2003.

The Maryland Republican Party approved a resolution at its convention in May encouraging Impallaria to resign. That resolution came on the heels of an aide to Impallaria being fined $1,000 for not including a campaign authority line on a robocall that attacked fellow Republican Del. Kathy Szeliga.

Impallaria has had other legal issues, including other suits against party members, a 2017 conviction of driving while impaired and a 1982 conviction of battery after he was accused of trying to run down four people, including his mother and brother.

Bush said Impallaria has not shown how anything said at the committee meeting was defamatory.

A hearing on a motion to dismiss the case was held Thursday and Impallaria wasn’t there. Impallaria said he didn’t receive notice of the hearing.

Circuit Judge Jan Marshall Alexander granted a motion to dismiss the case, Bush said. He also granted a motion for summary judgement in favor of the defendants, Bush said.

Impallaria said he plans to file a motion asking the judge to reconsider the dismissal.

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