Aug 31 2007
The family of Northampton psychiatrist Rodolph H. Turcotte has settled a defamation suit against Augusten Burroughs, author of the best-selling memoir Running With Scissors, and the book's publisher. In the suit filed two years ago in Middlesex Superior Court, members of the Turcotte family alleged defamation, fraud, emotional distress, and invasion of privacy, contending that,
despite the name change, everyone in Northampton knew that Finch was Turcotte.
They also alleged that the bizarre behavior described in the book was fabricated. Turcotte died in 2000.
The family's lawyer, Tyler Chapman, announced the settlement yesterday. Financial terms were not disclosed, but two changes will be made to future printings of Running With Scissors. The word "memoir" in the author's note will be changed to "book", and the acknowledgments page will include this statement by Burroughs: "I would like to thank the real-life members of the family portrayed in this book for taking me into their home and accepting me as one of their own. I recognize that their memories of the events described in this book are different than my own. They are each fine, decent, and hard-working people. The book was not intended to hurt the family. Both my publisher and I regret any unintentional harm resulting from the publishing and marketing of Running with Scissors."
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