indicated by gestures and non-verbal conduct that they wanted to dance
Remember Christine Mancision? To recap, she’s the hedge fund investor relations lady who, back in October 2009, sued both the Hyatt Morristown and James Graeber, for an incident that took place on the evening of November 22, 2008, that incident being Graeber approaching her on the dance floor of his sister’s wedding, grabbing her arm, taking her for a spin, and then “flinging” her off to the side, causing Mancision to make a hard crash landing on her wrist, which was “bent the complete opposite way” when she stood up. Her injuries were so extensive that they required surgery, a metal plate and three screws (as well as “eight months of grueling rehabilitation”) and while she blames Graeber first and foremost, she also believes the Hyatt played a part in overserving the guy when he was, she says, “visibly intoxicated,” and therefore added “fuel to the fire” in Graeber’s dancing feet. Unfortunately for Mancision, Judge Robert Sweet has ruled that while she can go after Graeber for what happened that night, she cannot collect damages from the hotel, because there is not enough evidence to prove that the Hyatt served her dancing partner alcohol “when he was in a visibly intoxicated state” or that he was drunk at all at any point during the ceremony or reception, a conclusion he came to in part based on:
The fact that only one person claims Graeber missed walking his mom down the aisle because he was out getting bombed and lost track of time.
At her deposition, Mancision described how Henige told her that he had heard from Beley that Graeber was late to the wedding ceremony because he had been drinking and missed being able to walk his mother down the aisle. Graeber disputes any allegation that he was late or that one of his duties at the wedding was to walk his mother down the aisle…Mary Beley née Graeber, the bride, and Beley, the groom, have stated that Graeber was not late to the wedding.
The fact that Graeber was not overheard asking Mancision, “May I dave this hance?” nor was he seen knocking over three bridesmaids in an attempt to catch the bouquet or shouting “NEXT!” 10 seconds into each speech.
Mary Beley née Graeber, the bride, and Beley, the groom, have stated that…at not time during the proceedings was his speech slurred or was the smell of alcohol detected on his breath and he was neither rowdy nor noisy nor were his eyes red.
The fact that Graeber was not sent to bed early by the hotel staff, unlike some people.
Emir Kobak, the Director of Banquets at the Hyatt, testified that Hyatt bartenders are trained to alert the Banquet Captain if a guest is having too many drinks, and that all bartenders attend alcohol awareness training every six months. Banquet Captain’s Report reflects that Hyatt’s policy as to excessive drinking was enforced at the wedding reception, that a female guest was cut off from the bar (and given water and coffee and was escorted to her room) and that the servers were directed not to serve shots notwithstanding some guests were requesting them.
Some other details from that fateful night the judge threw in for our benefit:
The suggestion there may have been some foot fetishists among the guests.
Following dinner, Mancision and Henige, along with a few of his co-workers, proceeded to the dance floor where they danced in a group for about 15-20 minutes. Mancision was wearing shoes which had a 3-3.25 inch heel, although at least one witness descried the shoes as tall 4.5 inch stiletto shoes which were so “stunning” that they were a topic of conversation among guests.
Graeber testified that, after he had been on the dance floor for about two songs, he and Holn were approached by a group of five to six women, including Mancision, who indicated by gestures and non-verbal conduct that they wanted to dance with Graeber and Holn.