ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — A party that got out of hand is now at the center of a legal battle. Playboy is suing a UCF fraternity. They say Kappa Alpha Psi had no right to use the company’s logo and name when promoting a party that the police had to break up.
Image taken from fraternity’s web site promoting the party. If fraternity members thought it was cute to use the Playboy bunny as their logo, the lawsuit probably changed their mind. If they lose this suit, they could owe hundreds of thousands dollars in damages.
When he saw the Playboy bunny on his party ticket, Alton Conner figured he’d have a pretty good time.
“It was awesome. There were girls running around everywhere, beautiful ladies, everywhere,” Conner says. But as students streamed into the hotel last March for Kappa Alpha Psi’s annual pajama jam frat party, things went way out of hand.
“People started pushing, shoving try to get in,” says party attendee Jamaal Percell.
“Cops were all over the place, people running around all over the place. It was basically crazy,” says Altagrace Medastin, who also went to the party. “Everybody just ended up falling and getting trampled. I actually fell. Me and a couple of my friends actually fell and got stepped on.”
When it was over, a student was covered with blood, two glass doors were smashed and the hotel refunded $10,000 in room rates to angry guests. But the story does not end there.
Playboy Magazine has now filed suit in federal court, claiming the fraternity’s “unauthorized use” of the Playboy image has generated “substantial ill will” towards the magazine, which claims it has suffered “serious and substantial injury” to its reputation.
The suit alleges the fraternity has long used the Playboy bunny as its own logo.
Now, the magazine wants the chapter, and two others, to pay up to a hundred thousand dollars for every time it used that trademark.
We tried to find someone associated with Kappa Alpha Psi, but we’ve had no luck. Meanwhile, the first court hearing is set for next Friday, when the magazine hopes a judge will grant an injunction, preventing any more use of the Playboy logo