A retired attorney with a Maryland law license has to pay $85,000 to a Connecticut woman for hitting her in the face with pasta in a spicy sauce. The woman sued for negligence and battery after she was injured from the impact and hit her head, the Connecticut Law Tribune reported.
James P. Sweeney, a retired real estate lawyer who now lives in Florida, was arguing with another man at an Italian restaurant in March 2015 when he picked up the pasta dish and threw it, hitting both his intended target and plaintiff Constance Koulmey, according to court filings.
A Connecticut jury awarded $85,049 plus interest for a total of $102,550 to cover Koulmey’s medical expenses and non-economic damages after deliberating for 3 1/2 hours, the Connecticut Law Tribune reported.
The pasta hit Koulmey in the head and caused some sauce to drip into her eyes. Koulmey fell and hit her head, and claimed she suffered a concussion, eye pain, headaches, neck pain, back pain and elevated blood pressure, Connecticut Law Tribune reported.
Sweeney claimed he threw the pasta in self-defense, that Koulmey had misrepresented the incident (he argued the sauce was not spicy) and that Koulmey had pre-existing back and neck injuries.
Sweeney is also licensed to practice law in New Jersey and Florida.