Andy Griffith sues sheriff's candidate for taking his name
Andy Griffith, the actor best known for playing Andy Taylor on The Andy Griffith Show and Ben Matlock on Matlock, is suing a man who ran and lost for sheriff of Grant County, Wis., for taking his name and using it during the campaign. I shit you not, TV fans: William Harold Fenrick legally changed his name to Andrew Jackson Griffith and ran for the sheriff's office under that name (the plaintiff's full name is Andy Samuel Griffith, by the way).
The suit claims that Fenrick made the change for the "sole purpose of taking advantage of Griffith's notoriety in an attempt to gain votes," and that he should go back to his former name and print disclaimers in area newspapers that he has nothing to do with the more famous Griffith. The actor is suing for copyright infringement and invasion of privacy.
For his part, Fenrick/Griffith says he didn't profit from the name change, but did admit to changing his name as a publicity stunt. "For such an American icon, it's a pretty un-American thing to do to me," he told the AP. By the way, Fenrick/Griffith came in third. Guess there weren't as many centenarians in Grant County as he thought there were, huh?