A lawsuit filed by local Internet celebrity Kimberly “Sweet Brown” Wilkins over a song briefly sold on Apple Inc.'s online music store has been dismissed due to “failure to prosecute,” court records show.
Wilkins, who gained Internet fame with the catchphrase “Ain't nobody got time for that!” was suing Apple and a Seattle-area radio show in federal court over a song that was sold for a little more than two months on the iTunes online music store.
In the suit, Wilkins claimed she was defrauded when her voice and likeness were used to sell the song on iTunes without her permission.
Court documents show the lawsuit was dismissed because Wilkins and a co-plaintiff did not provide disclosures after they were ordered to do so by U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton.
Heaton dismissed the case without prejudice, meaning Wilkins can refile the lawsuit, records show.
The woman known as “Sweet Brown” rose to Internet stardom in an unlikely way.
Wilkins was interviewed April 8, 2012, by KFOR reporters covering an apartment fire near NW 23 and Villa. During the interview, she made comments and used several phrases that have made her somewhat famous.
“Well, I woke up to get me a cold pop and then I thought somebody was barbecuing,” Brown told the reporter. “I said, ‘Oh Lord Jesus, it's a fire.' Then I ran out, I didn't grab no shoes or nothing, Jesus. I ran for my life and then the smoke got me. I got bronchitis. Ain't nobody got time for that.”
Her son, who can be seen covering his face and shaking his head in what appears to be embarrassment, paced behind her.
In the suit, Wilkins claimed representatives from the Bob Rivers Show in the Seattle area called her the day after the KFOR broadcast and asked “general questions relating to the apartment fire.”
That same day, the suit claimed, the radio station produced a song called, “I Got Bronchitis,” which sampled several of the phrases Wilkins used during the interview with KFOR.
By April 10, 2012, the song was available on iTunes, the lawsuit states.
“At no time did Sweet Brown consent or agree to have her name, likeness, voice, statements, photograph used in connection with any products, songs, video productions, merchandise, goods, advertisements or solicitations for merchandise, goods or service,” the lawsuit states.
Court documents show that “I Got Bronchitis” was for sale on iTunes from April 16, 2012, to June 29, 2012. Disclosures made by Apple in court filings do not indicate how many times the track was downloaded.
The lawsuit was filed in Oklahoma County District Court in June 2012. It was removed to federal court in January.
A woman named Sparkell Adams was named as co-plaintiff. She is described as Wilkins' business manager.
When reached by telephone in March, Adams told The Oklahoman she and Wilkins would not comment on the lawsuit.
Initially, Wilkins and Adams were demanding $15 million from the defendants, including $7.5 million in punitive damages. An amended lawsuit filed in December did not specify how much money the two women were seeking.
The women had attorneys at one point during the proceedings, but court records show the lawyers were granted permission to withdraw from the case March 1.
“There are unresolvable differences between counsel and the plaintiffs that require withdrawal of counsel,” one of the attorneys wrote in a motion to withdraw.
Wilkins, who has done local commercials and made numerous TV and radio appearances since the April 8, 2012, interview, could not be reached for comment on this story.
During a recent interview on ABC's “The View,” Wilkins claimed she's been seen on YouTube more than 2 billion times. She said she is developing a reality show and revealed she has her own barbecue sauce called “Oh Lord Jesus It's A Fire!”
The sauce's label, displayed during the interview on “The View,” has the phrase “Sauce taste so good ... make you wanna slap yo mama!” under the product logo.
Wilkins also claimed she is starting her own clothing line and has trademarked some of her well-known catchphrases.
And despite the lawsuit, it appears Wilkins has at least three songs currently for sale on iTunes. One track, called “Cold Poppin,” was released in April. Another track, called “You's a Monkey,” was released in May 2012, about a month after the interview with KFOR.