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Well, it’s taken the better part of a year for this, but it’s finally happening. Jeremy Clarkson is now in the middle of a lawsuit over the altercation that first got him suspended and then fired from the hit auto series Top Gear. It’s not exactly the knockout punch heard ‘round the world, but it’s apparently still haunting Clarkson eight months later.
Both Clarkson and the BBC itself are being sued by show producer Oisin Tymon, and legal teams from all sides met on Friday at a London employment tribunal, according to BBC News. No financial terms were revealed, so it’s entirely possible that all of the nitty gritty of this case could be handled behind closed doors, but the fact that it’s happening now is still pretty surprising. To be expected, the BBC released a statement that said they’ll be “responding to this claim,” but that was the extent of their input.
For those who are unfamiliar with the case – and if you’re a fan of Jeremy Clarkson, it’s kind of impossible to still be in the dark – Top Gear was filming back in March, and during a particularly long day of work, Clarkson went a tad apeshit over there not being any hot food at the hotel for the cast and crew. He punched Tymon in the face, which caused his lip to bleed and swell up. Tymon drove himself to the hospital afterward, thinking that the incident cost him his job, and stated at the time that he didn’t want to press charges. Looks like he’s changed his mind, which is hardly surprising, given how much verbal and social media abuse Tymon received after the incident. Being the reason that Clarkson got ousted from Top Gear is not a good mark to have on one’s record in the U.K.
Two unnamed witnesses to the incident are taking part in the inquiry. The matter has been so heavily publicized, with little going in Clarkson’s favor as the facts came out. I mean, he did have to publicly ask his fanbase to stop harassing Tymon, which was a nice move, but obviously not enough to calm the waters.
Whatever the outcome of the case, it likely won’t have any effect on either the updated version of Top Gear with new host Chris Evans, which is set to premiere in 2016, nor the new Amazon show that Clarkson and his fellow former Top Gear co-hosts are currently putting together. That show is also set for a 2016 premiere.