According to an article by Abdon M. Pallasch in todays Chicago Sun-Times, Bob Rohrmann,
the owner of 26 Honda, Toyota and Lexus automobile dealerships in Illinois and Indiana, is suing a plastic surgeon who carried on an affair with his wife for “alienation of affection.” Rohrmann[famous for his signature roar at the end of commercials] and his third wife Ronda, were married in 2002. They had met at the Rohrmann’s Oak Brook Toyota dealership.
At some point after the marriage, Rohrmann saw some emails that had been exchanged between his wife and the surgeon. He concluded they were having an affair and filed for divorce. The couple reconciled, but several months later Rohrmann again spotted some suspicious emails between his wife and the surgeon. Not long thereafter, Ronda Rohrmann filed for divorce.
In response, Rohrman filed his “alienation of affection” lawsuit. These types of cases are not the easiest to prove. Rohrman will have to demonstrate: 1) that his soon to be ex-wife did in fact have love and affection for him; 2) overt, wilful acts on the part of the surgeon which caused Rohrman’s wife to lose her feelings for Rohrman and 3) actual damages. The question becomes whether the fondness Ms. Rohrman had for her husband simply died on the vine, or was spirited away by the plastic surgeon.
Some lawyers don’t place much stock in alienation cases, saying they are nothing more than an means to harass a former spouse’s new love. Rohrman’s attorney, Enrico J. Mirabelli, however, indicated that under the right circumstances, alienation cases have their place. Mirabelli noted that “If you play in a lion’s den, you’re gonna get mauled”. [Excellent use of the whole lion/roar theme by Mr. Mirabelli].
Ironically, Rohrman has indicated he would still like to reconcile with his wife.
Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune, did not have a favorable impression of this lawsuit, as noted in his blog, Change of Subject.