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Media will not be allowed to watch Hulk Hogan sex tape

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

A judge has ruled members of the news media and the public watching next week’s trial pitting wrestling star Hulk Hogan against the online entertainment media website Gawker will not be allowed to view the sex tape in question.

According to a tweet from Tampa Bay Times reporter Anna Phillips, a television set showing the video will be turned to face only the jury.

Hogan, legally Terry Bollea, is suing Gawker for $100 million for invasion of privacy after the website posted a one-minute clip of the sex tape in 2012. The tape showed Bollea having consensual sex with Heather Clem, the then wife of Bubba the Love Sponge.

Two other cases were filed against the radio shock jock and his ex-wife. The case against Bubba was settled and there are indications the one with Heather Clem will be as well.

Bollea, as a judge ruled he will be referred to, and his attorneys filed a motion in court to bar the press and public from seeing the sex tape, arguing it would further violate Bollea’s privacy.

In a separate ruling, a judge also allowed Bollea to wear his trademark bandanas on his head, though the accessory will have to be a single color. Bollea argued the bandana is needed to protect his bald head from the sun.

The lawsuit kicks off next week in Pinellas county court and is expected to last at least several days. Gawker is defending its posting of the sex tape arguing Bollea made his sex-life common knowledge by talking about it on shows such as the Howard Stern Show and writing about it in biographies.

That, they claim, makes the tape newsworthy.

Janelle Irwin has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. She also hosts a weekly political talk show on WMNF Community radio. Janelle formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a diehard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and the ongoing Pier debacle. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also the devoted mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder. To contact, email janelle@floridapolitics.com.

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