TALE NO. 23 A case involving an in pro per plaintiff can be interesting and challenging…

Plaintiff ate dinner at a local fast food restaurant. One of the employees working that evening had a cut on his finger. The Plaintiff complained that she had found a bloody bandage in the hamburger wrapper and got a free dinner. The employees threw out the dinner wrapper – assuming that was the end of the matter. Plaintiff talked to several friends and filed a complaint alleging she had been exposed to AIDS from the bloody bandage. The demand stated in the complaint was for $3 million.

The defendant (fast food restaurant) demurred to the complaint. Since a demurrer is described in the statute as a “trial”, plaintiff served subpoenas on several of the defendant’s employees to appear at the hearing on the demurrer. Counsel for the defendant brought a motion to quash the first three subpoenas; at the hearing on the motion to quash the judge explained that witnesses could not testify at the demurrer hearing. Notwithstanding which plaintiff served another two subpoenas!

At the hearing the plaintiff objected that none of the subpoenaed witnesses had appeared. The demurrer was sustained with leave to amend, but the plaintiff failed to amend; the motion to dismiss was granted and the defendant was awarded his costs. On several occasions after the dismissal, the plaintiff contacted defense counsel to reiterate her demand for $3 million…upon receipt of which she would pay the defendant’s awarded costs.