675 N.E.2d 249 (Ill. App. Ct. 1996)
PROCEDURAL HISTORY: Plaintiff mother appealed a judgment (Illinois), which dismissed her action against defendant newspaper for invasion of privacy, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and battery arising out of articles and photographs published by the newspaper about her son's gang-related murder.
-On January 1, 1993, the newspaper published an article about the son's murder, which included statements the mother made to her deceased son in his private hospital room, along with an unauthorized photograph taken after the death.
-On January 3, 1993, the newspaper published another article containing an unauthorized photograph of the son while undergoing medical treatment.
-The court held that the mother had stated a cause of action for the public disclosure of private facts arising out of the article on January 1, 1993, because it contained private statements made by her.
-She did not state a cause of action as to the publication of the photograph on January 3, 1993, because no mention was made of her.
-The court noted that a reasonable jury could have concluded that the information publicized was highly offensive to a reasonable person and was not a matter of legitimate public concern.
-Similarly, the mother stated a cause of action for intentional infliction of emotional distress arising from the first article, but not from the second one.
-The court determined that reasonable people could have found that the newspaper's actions constituted extreme and outrageous conduct.
|-The public disclosure of private facts is one branch of the tort of invasion of privacy. To state a cause of action for the public disclosure of private facts, plaintiff must plead (1) the defendant gave publicity; (2) to her private, not public, life; (3) the matter publicized was highly offensive to a reasonable person; and (4) the matter publicized was not of legitimate public concern.|
CONCLUSION: The court reversed that portion of the judgment dismissing the claims for invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress arising out of the article and photograph published on January 1, 1993, and remanded the cause for further proceedings. The court affirmed the remainder of the judgment.
Interested in learning how to get the top grades in your law school classes? Want to learn how to study smarter than your competition? Interested in transferring to a high ranked school?