Derek Daly (R) with Johnny Rutherford (L) in front of the scoring pylon at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
PHOTO: John Black/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

Emmis, Staysniak: Daly Lawsuit is Baseless

INDIANAPOLIS—The lawsuit against Emmis Communications and “Big Joe” Staysniak, is without merit, said both Emmis and Staysniak, Thursday, responding to a suit filed by Derek Daly, Who was fired from his freelance job covering racing and the Indy 500, by WISH TV in 2018.

Daly was told he would no longer be needed as an analyst after a story by former Colts announcer Bob Lamey about Daly using a racial slur became public in 2018. That was during a conversation between Lamey and 93.5/107.5 The Fan host Staysniak, which was overheard by a former Emmis broadcast engineer. Lamey was fired by the Colts.

Emmis is the parent company of WIBC and 93.5/107.5 The Fan.

In the lawsuit filed Thursday, Daly claimed fraud by Staysniak, Emmis, the Colts and Lamey, all four of which are named as defendants. Daily previously sued Nexstar and WISH TV.

“Daly’s new lawsuit alleges some sort of conspiracy to commit fraud and vicarious liability on the part of Emmis. Daly’s attempt to sue innocent parties as part of his ongoing feud with his previous employer is both factually and legally without basis,” read a statement from Emmis.

“Emmis stands behind Joe Staysniak, who is well known as “Big Joe,” and who has served Indianapolis loyally both as a Colts player and as on-air talent for Emmis for more than 25 years. Emmis will not be intimidated by these misguided litigation tactics and will aggressively defend itself, its employees, and their reputations, including evaluating counterclaims against Daly for filing such frivolous claims and allegations.”

Staysniak said he is saddened by the suit because he and Daly worked together for years as friends and colleagues.

“I hold myself to an extremely high degree of professionalism and I take my work and my reputation in this community very seriously.  I’m not going to talk a whole lot about this pending case, but I will be fighting back hard against these false allegations against me and Emmis,” said Staysniak.

It was unclear as of Thursday what damages Daly was seeking in the suit.

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