Trial to open Monday in day care center emotional distress suit

Amelia Flood Oct. 2, 2009, 2:55am

A suit over the emotional distress allegedly suffered by a boy at a Granite City day care center is set to open Monday.

Plaintiff Sossity Laleman, on behalf of her son Jordan Laleman, alleges that a day care center employee pinned her son to the floor and that his employer negligently hired him.

A defense motion in limine was filed Tuesday asking Madison County Circuit Judge David Hylla to bar testimony about one defendant's possible depression, to bar the plaintiff from "crying and sobbing" on the witness stand, and to bar Jordan Laleman from the courtroom.

According to the court schedule, the trial is set to open at 9 a.m.

Defendants include Carrousel Too Day Care owner Jan Tolhurst and employee John Welle.

According to the complaint, Welle in July 2006 allegedly pinned Jordan Laleman to the floor by placing his foot on the boy's neck while shouting in a "loud and menancing manner."

Sossity Laleman claims that Tolhurst failed to investigate Welle's alleged history of "uncontrollable anger and violence as an employee of other day care centers."

On Sept. 29, the defense filed an amended motion in limine asking that Hylla bar, amongst other things, testimony about the wealth or poverty of the plaintiff and any testimony about Welle's prior employment at different day care centers or his possible depression.

The suit seeks damages in excess of $50,000 per count.

The plaintiff is represented by Mark Levy of Collinsville.

The defendants are represented by David Friess of Belleville.

The case is Madison case number 07-L-147.

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