Hennessy v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co
In Hennessy v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 74 Conn. 699, 710, 52 A. 490 (1902), the plaintiff's counsel, in a lengthy and passionate argument, portrayed the defendant insurance company as a "rich corporation" and "one of the worst land-sharks and plunderers that I ever saw." Hennessy v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 74 Conn. 699 at 709, 52 A. 490.
In Hennessy, the plaintiff's counsel spoke as follows:
"Oh, yes! You can arraign counsel who have courage enough to attack one of these insurance companies, and cannot be scared out after two years and a half fight; you can arraign them, but I tell you it won't put an angel's wings on Hegeman president of the defendant company . . . either. The president of a corporation who doesn't dare answer whether he has committed perjury or not in this State, and the man who says that he knew this man was not a fit subject of insurance, and yet allowed a policy to be issued which he knew his company never intended to pay, and to take her premiums year after year, and put them in their pockets; and my friend says we have the remedy now to sue them for those premiums. Yes, gentlemen, and have another two years and a half fight, and an expense ten times the amount of the premiums. Of course they could well enough pay it. What is the use? Spend all that time and money and expense fighting this rich corporation to get back those few premiums! This poor woman cannot do it: they know we can't. That is wherein this corporation, it seems to me, is one of the worst land-sharks and plunderers that I ever saw. It is among the poor, yes, he says, the uneducated people. Yes, my client is poor, she is uneducated, and she cannot understand how these fellows come around and get her to pay her money in, and then when she wants her pay from the insurance company she can't get it." Hennessy v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., supra, 74 Conn. 709.