F. Chris Cawood v. Linda Booth, et al., E2007-02537-SC-R11-CV, (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2008) has a set of facts you don’t run into every day or, at least, I hope you don’t run into everyday. Here is the description of the case from the opinion of the Tennessee Court of Appeals.
The plaintiff, F. Chris Cawood, is an attorney. He represented Tammy Clark (“the Client”) in a divorce case. During the post-judgment phase of that representation, the plaintiff and the Client engaged in a sexual relationship. On occasion, while in the plaintiff’s office, the plaintiff would masturbate in the presence of the Client, following which he would give her a credit on her bill. After she complained to local authorities, the Roane County Sheriff’s Department equipped the Client with concealed audio and video equipment. Thereafter, unbeknownst to the plaintiff, she videotaped him while he was masturbating. During this event, the Client hit him on the buttocks and pinched his nipples. Following this event, the videotape was placed under the control of Linda Booth of the Sheriff’s Department. Booth gave the video to another investigator, Dennis Worley, who happens to be the Client’s uncle. Worley was not involved in the investigation but wanted to see the videotape to ascertain if his niece had done anything illegal. Worley viewed the videotape in an office shared by officers Randy Scarbrough and Jon French. During the viewing, the door to the office was open. The video was viewed not only by Worley, but also by Scarbrough and French, a bail bondsman who was passing by the office, and others. The plaintiff filed suit against Booth, Worley, Scarbrough and French alleging (1) a violation of the Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance Act of 1994, (2) invasion of privacy by public disclosure of private facts, and (3) outrageous conduct. The trial court granted all defendants summary judgment as to all claims.Plaintiff appeals. We vacate the grant of summary judgment to Booth and Worley on the plaintiff’s outrageous conduct claim. In all other respects, the trial court’s judgment is affirmed.