(CN) – The Kentucky Supreme Court threw out a $2 million judgment for a woman who said she was raped by a mental hospital orderly, ruling that the trial court did not allow the hospital to mount the defense that the sex might have been consensual.
Artemecia Brooks was a patient at Ten Broeck Hospital in Louisville when orderly Feotis Gilbert allegedly forced her to have sex with him. The trial court awarded Brooks $291,000 for pain and suffering, and $1.8 million in punitive damages. The state appeals court affirmed the decision.
Gilbert was acquitted of rape in a 2004 criminal trial.
On appeal, the hospital claimed that the trial court improperly excluded Brooks’ medical records and relevant sexual history. Justice Scott agreed that those exclusions damaged the hospital’s case.
“Evidence offered by Ten Broeck necessarily produces proof that Brooks engaged in other sexual behavior and implicated a sexual disposition,” Scott wrote.
Brooks’ medical records, which were also excluded at trial, indicated that she had reported an increase in her libido.
“Her comments that she had ‘sex’ at the hospital, rather than being ‘raped,’ are relevant to the issue of consent, while the remainder of the evidence is relevant to the issues of damages,” Scott ruled.