Diamond v. Yale University - the Court of Appeals of the State of Connecticut
Argued March 19 Opinion The plaintiff, Ann P. Diamond, appeals from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the defendant, Yale University, following a jury trial. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly refused to permit the jury to consider the totality of the defendant's conduct in determining whether the plaintiff was entitled to prevail on her claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. The present action arises out of an employment dispute between the parties. In the second count of her complaint, the plaintiff alleged a cause of action sounding in intentional infliction of emotional distress. At the conclusion of the plaintiff's case, the defendant filed a motion for a directed verdict as to, inter alia, her claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress. The court granted the motion, in part, by removing certain allegations from the plaintiff's complaint that, as a matter of law, did not constitute extreme and outrageous conduct. 1 The plaintiff objected and asked the court to instruct the jury to consider the defendant's conduct in its totality, not the individual allegations of extreme and outrageous behavior. The court refused to instruct the jury to consider the totality of the defendant's conduct. In rendering its verdict, the jury was asked to consider and to respond to extensive interrogatories. With respect to the plaintiff's claim of intentional infliction of emotional distress, the jury was asked to answer questions as to whether the plaintiff had proven the elements of the tort.