Gilbert K. Davis, VA Bar No.4683
Attorney for Plaintiff
9516-C Lee Highway
Fairfax, Virginia 22031
Joseph Cammarata, VA Bar No.35118
Attorney for Plaintiff
9516-C Lee Highway
Fairfax, Virginia 22031
Attorneys for Plaintiff.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF
ARKANSAS, WESTERN DIVISION
PAULA CORBIN JONES, )
Plaintiff, ) CIVIL ACTION NO.
WILLIAM JEFFERSON CLINTON )
and DANNY FERGUSON, ) JURY TRIAL DEMANDED
) Filed May 6, 1994
Plaintiff Paula Corbin Jones, by counsel, brings this action to obtain
redress for the deprivation and conspiracy to deprive Plaintiff of her
federally protected rights as hereafter alleged, and for intentional
infliction of emotional distress, and for defamation.
1. This Court has subject matter jurisdiction pursuant to (a) 28 U.S.C. @
1331, because the case arises under the Constitution and laws of the United
States; (b) 28 U.S.C. @ 1343, because this action seeks redress and damages
for violation of 42 U.S.C. @ 1983 and 1985 and, in particular, the due
process and equal protection provisions of the United States Constitution,
including the rights protected in the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments
thereof; and (c) 28 U.S.C. @ 1232, since there is diversity of citizenship
and this is a civil action involving, exclusive of interest and costs, a sum
in excess of $ 50,000.00. This Court also has jurisdiction over the causes
of action alleged in Counts III and IV pursuant to federal pendant
2. Venue is appropriate in this judicial district under 28 U.S.C. @1391(b),
because Defendants William Jefferson Clinton and Danny Ferguson reside here,
and a substantial part of the events giving rise to this Complaint occurred
3. Plaintiff Paula Corbin Jones (hereafter "Jones") is a citizen of the
State of California. Prior to her marriage on December 28, 1991, Plaintiff
was known as Paula Rosalee Corbin.
4. Defendant William Jefferson Clinton (hereafter "Clinton") is a citizen
of the State of Arkansas or alternatively of the District of Columbia.
5. Defendant Danny Ferguson (hereafter "Ferguson") is a citizen of the
State of Arkansas.
6. On or about March 11, 1991, Jones began work as an Arkansas State
employee for the Arkansas Industrial Development Commission (hereafter
"AIDC"), an agency within the executive branch of the State of Arkansas. The
Governor of Arkansas is the chief executive officer of the executive branch
of the State of Arkansas.
7. On May 8, 1991, the AIDC sponsored the Third Annual Governor's Quality
Management Conference (hereafter "Conference"), which was held at the
Excelsior Hotel in Little Rock, Arkansas. Clinton, then Governor of
Arkansas, delivered a speech at the Conference on that day.
8. Also on that day, Jones worked at the registration desk at the
Conference along with Pamela Blackard (hereafter "Blackard") another AIDC
9. A man approached the registration desk and informed Jones and Blackard
that he was Trooper Danny Ferguson, Bill Clinton's bodyguard. Defendant
Ferguson was at that time a law enforcement officer within the ranks of the
Arkansas State Police and assigned to the Governor's Security Detail. He
was in street clothes and displayed a firearm on his person. He made small
talk with Jones and Blackard and then left.
10. At approximately 2:30 p.m. on that day, Ferguson reappeared at the
registration desk, delivered a piece of paper to Jones with a four digit
number written on it and said: "The Governor would like to meet with you" in
this suite number. Plaintiff had never met Defendant Clinton and saw him in
person for the first time at the Conference.
11. A three-way conversation followed between Ferguson, Blackard and Jones
about what the Governor could want. Jones, who was then a rank-and-file
Arkansas state employee being paid approximately $ 6.35 an hour, thought it
was an honor to be asked to meet the Governor. Ferguson stated during the
conversation: "It's okay, we do this all the time for the Governor."
12. Jones agreed to meet with the Governor because she thought it might
lead to an enhanced employment opportunity with the State. Blackard told
Jones that she would assume Plaintiff's duties at the registration desk.
13. Trooper Ferguson then escorted Jones to the floor of the hotel suite
whose number had been written on the slip of paper Trooper Ferguson had
given to Jones. The door was slightly ajar when she arrived at the suite.
14. Jones knocked on the door frame and Clinton answered. Plaintiff
entered. Ferguson remained outside.
15. The room was furnished as a business suite, not for an overnight hotel
guest. It contained a couch and chairs, but no bed.
16. Clinton shook Jones' hand, invited her in, and closed the door.
17. A few minutes of small talk ensued, which included asking Jones about
her job. Clinton told Jones that Dave Harrington is "my good friend." On May
8, 1991, David Harrington was Director of the AIDC, having been appointed to
that post by Governor Clinton. Harrington was Jones' ultimate superior
within the AIDC.
18. Clinton then took Jones' hand and pulled her toward him, so that their
bodies were in close proximity.
19. Jones removed her hand from his and retreated several feet.
20. However, Clinton approached Jones again. He said: "I love the way your
hair flows down your back" and "I love your curves." While saying these
things, Clinton put his hand on Plaintiff's leg and started sliding it
toward the hem of Plaintiff's culottes. Clinton also bent down to attempt to
kiss Jones on the neck.
21. Jones exclaimed, "What are you doing?" and escaped from Clinton's
physical proximity by walking away from him. Jones tried to distract Clinton
by chatting with him about his wife. Jones later took a seat at the end of
the sofa nearest the door. Clinton asked Jones: "Are you married?" She
responded that she had a regular boyfriend. Clinton then approached the sofa
and as he sat down he lowered his trousers and underwear exposing his erect
penis and asked Jones to "kiss it."
22. There were distinguishing characteristics in Clinton's genital area
that were obvious to Jones.
23. Jones became horrified, jumped up from the couch, stated that she was
"not that kind of girl" and said: "Look, I've got to go." She attempted to
explain that she would get in trouble for being away from the registration
24. Clinton, while fondling his penis said: "Well, I don't want to make you
do anything you don't want to do." Clinton then stood up and pulled up his
pants and said: "If you get in trouble for leaving work, have Dave call me
immediately and I'll take care of it." As Jones left the room Clinton looked
sternly at Jones and said: "You are smart. Let's keep this between
25. Jones believed "Dave" to be the same David Harrington, of whom Clinton
previously referred. Clinton, by his comments about Harrington to Jones,
affirmed that he had control over Jones' employment, and that he was willing
to use that power. Jones became fearful that her refusal to succumb to
Clinton's advances could damage her in her job and even jeopardize her
26. At no time, nor in any manner, did Jones encourage Clinton to turn the
meeting toward a sexual liaison. To the contrary, the unwanted sexual
advances made by Clinton were repugnant and abhorrent to Jones who took all
reasonable steps she could think to do to terminate Clinton's perverse
attention and actions toward her.
27. Jones left the hotel suite and came into the presence of Trooper
Ferguson in the hallway. Ferguson did not escort Plaintiff back to the
registration desk. Jones said nothing to Ferguson and he said nothing to her
during her departure from the suite.
28. Jones was visibly shaken and upset when she returned to the
registration desk. Pamela Blackard immediately asked her what was wrong.
After a moment, during which Jones attempted to collect herself, she told
Blackard much of what had happened. Blackard attempted to comfort Plaintiff.
29. Jones thereafter left the Conference and went to the work place of her
friend, Debra Ballentine.
30. When Ballentine met Plaintiff at the reception area, she immediately
asked Jones what was wrong because Jones was visibly upset and nervous.
Plaintiff wanted to talk about something that just happened and wanted to
discuss it someplace privately. Ballentine and Jones went to a private area
in the office, and later outside. Jones then told Ballentine what had
happened with Clinton in the hotel suite. According to Ballentine, Jones
told her that Clinton said as she left the room, "I know you're a smart girl
and I'm sure you'll keep this to yourself."
31. Ballentine urged Jones to report the incident. Plaintiff refused,
fearing that, if she did so, no one would believe her account, that she
would lose her job, and that the incident would endanger her relationship
with her then-fiance (now husband), Stephen Jones.
32. Later, on the same day, Plaintiff also described the substance of her
encounter with Clinton to her sister, Charlotte Corbin Brown.
33. Within two days or May 8, 1991, Plaintiff also informed her sister,
Lydia Corbin Cathey, and her mother, Delmar Lee Corbin, the substance of her
encounter with Clinton.
34. Plaintiff also told her fiance, Stephen Jones, that "Bill Clinton made
a pass at me but I said 'no'." She, however, did not at that time tell him
the lurid details of her horrific encounter with Clinton in the hotel suite,
which she feared, if disclosed, might ruin her relationship with Mr. Jones
35. Plaintiff continued to work at AIDC. One of her duties was to deliver
documents to and from the Office of the Governor, as well as other offices
within the Arkansas State Capitol complex. In or about June, 1991, while
Jones was performing this duty, Ferguson saw her at the Governor's office
and said: "Bill wants your phone number. Hillary's out of town often and
Bill would like to see you." Plaintiff refused to provide her telephone
36. On another occasion, Ferguson approached Jones and asked: "How's
Steve?" This frightened Plaintiff and made her feel as if she was being
watched and was not safe. She had never told Ferguson or Clinton the name of
37. Plaintiff and Stephen Jones later married. She gave birth to her child
and returned to work, after which she encountered Ferguson at Governor
Clinton's office. Ferguson told her: "I've told Bill how good looking you
are since you've had the baby." This, too, frightened Plaintiff and made her
feel that her activities were being monitored.
38. On one occasion, Plaintiff was accosted by Clinton in the Rotunda of
the Arkansas State Capitol. Clinton draped his arm over Plaintiff, pulled
her close and tightly to his body and said: "Don't we make a beautiful
couple -- beauty and the beast?" Clinton directed this remark to his
bodyguard, Trooper Larry Patterson, an officer of the Arkansas State Police
and also a member of the Governor's Security Detail.
39. Jones continued to work at AIDC even though she was in constant fear
that Governor Clinton might take retaliatory action against her because of
her rejection of his abhorrent sexual advances. Her enjoyment of her work
was severely diminished. In fact, she was treated in a hostile and rude
manner by certain superiors in AIDC. This rude conduct had not happened
prior to her encounter with Clinton. Further, after her maternity leave she
was transferred to a position which had no responsible duties for which she
could be adequately evaluated to earn advancement. The reason given to her
by her superiors for the transfer was that her previous position had been
eliminated. This reason was untrue since her former position was not
abolished. It was a pretext for the real reason which was that she was being
punished for her rejection of the various advances made by Clinton described
above. In addition, the job in which she was placed called for a higher
grade and pay, yet she was not paid more money than she received in her
previous position. Although other employees received merit increases, Jones
never received a raise beyond a cost of living increase.
40. Jones terminated her employment and separated from AIDC service on
February 20, 1993. On May 4, 1993, Plaintiff, her husband and child moved to
41. In January, 1994, Plaintiff visited her family and friends in Arkansas.
While Jones was in Arkansas, Ms. Ballentine telephoned Jones to arrange a
meeting for lunch. During the telephone conversation, Ballentine read to
Plaintiff a paragraph from an article published in the January, 1994 issue
of The American Spectator magazine regarding Plaintiff's hotel suite
encounter with Clinton. Attached hereto, and incorporated herein, as Exhibit
"A" is a copy of The American Spectator article.
42. The American Spectator account asserts that a woman by the name of
"Paula" told an unnamed trooper (obviously Defendant Ferguson), who had
escorted "Paula" to Clinton's hotel room, that "she was available to be
Clinton's regular girlfriend if he so desired," thus implying a consummated
and satisfying sexual encounter with Clinton, as well as a willingness to
continue a sexual relationship with him. These assertions are untrue. The
article, using information apparently derived from Ferguson, also
incorrectly asserts that the encounter took place in the evening.
43. The American Spectator account also asserted that the troopers'
"'official' duties included facilitating Clinton's cheating on his wife.
This meant that, on the State payroll, and using State time, vehicles and
resources, they were instructed by Clinton on a regular basis to approach
women and to solicit their telephone numbers for the Governor, to drive him
in State vehicles to rendezvous points and guard him during sexual
encounters; to secure hotel rooms and other meeting places for sex; . . ."
and various other things to facilitate Clinton's sex life including "to help
Clinton cover-up his activities by keeping tabs on Hillary's whereabouts and
lying to Hillary about her husband's whereabouts." Although this pattern of
conduct by Clinton may be true,the magazine article concluded, evidently
from interviews with troopers from Clinton's Security Detail, including
Ferguson, that "all of the women appear to have been willing participants in
the affairs and liaisons [emphasis added]."
44. Since Jones ("Paula") was one of the women preyed upon by Clinton and
his troopers, including by Defendant Ferguson, in the manner described
above, those who read this magazine account could conclude falsely that
Jones ("Paula") had a sexual relationship and affair with Clinton. Jones'
reputation within her community was thus seriously damaged.
45. Jones realized that those persons who already knew about the hotel room
encounter could identify her as the "Paula" mentioned in The American
Spectator article. She became extremely upset because, inter alia, she
feared that the statements in the magazine would damage her relationship
with her husband, her family, and her friends and acquaintances, some of
whom might have believed that she had agreed to be Clinton's "girlfriend" at
a time when she was engaged to Mr. Jones.
46. On January 8, 1994, at approximately 12:00 noon, Jones and Ballentine
were dining at the Golden Corral Steakhouse in North Little Rock, Arkansas.
Trooper Ferguson, who happened to be dining with his wife at this
restaurant, came over to their table to talk to Jones. Since Jones believed
that the ultimate source of the report in The American Spectator of the
hotel suite encounter was Trooper Ferguson, she confronted him on this
matter. Trooper Ferguson stated that he was sorry that Jones' first name had
appeared in the magazine article but that he had purposely concealed her
last name and place of employment from those to whom he recounted the
incident. Trooper Ferguson also said that he knew Jones had rebuffed Mr.
Clinton's sexual advances because, "Clinton told me you wouldn't do anything
47. Because the false statements appearing in The American Spectator
article that Jones was willing to have sex with Clinton (and the innuendo
that she had already done so when she left the hotel suite) threatened her
marriage, her friendships, and her family relationships, Plaintiff spoke
publicly on February 11, 1994, that she was the "Paula" mentioned in The
American Spectator article, that she had rebuffed Clinton's sexual advances,
and that she had not expressed a willingness to be his girlfriend. Jones and
her lawyer asked that Clinton acknowledge the incident, state that Jones had
rejected Clinton's advances, and apologize to Jones.
48. Clinton, who is now President of the United States of America responded
to Jones' request for an apology by having his press spokespersons deliver a
statement on his behalf that the incident never happened, and that he never
met Plaintiff. Thus, by innuendo and effect, Clinton publicly branded
Plaintiff a liar. Moreover, as recently as the week this Complaint was
filed, Clinton, through his White House aides, stated that Plaintiff's
account of the hotel room incident was untrue and a "cheap political trick."
49. Clinton hired an attorney, who, as Clinton's agent, said that Jones'
account "is really just another effort to rewrite the results of the
election [i.e. for President of the United States] and . . . distract the
President from his agenda." The attorney further asked the question: "Why
are these claims being brought now, three years after the fact?" The
attorney also asked how Jones' allegations could be taken "seriously." These
comments by Clinton's counsel, on behalf of Clinton, imply that Jones is a
50. Dee Dee Meyers, White House Spokeswoman, said of Jones' allegations:
"It's just not true." Thus, the pattern of defaming Jones continues to this
51. Clinton knows that Jones' allegations are true and that his, and his
attorney's, spokespersons', and agents' denials are false.
52. The outrageous nature of Clinton's branding of Jones as a liar is
aggravated in that a greater stigma and reputation loss is suffered by Jones
by the statements of the President of the United States in whom the general
public reposes trust and confidence in the integrity of the holder of that
53. Clinton, a member of the Arkansas State Bar, knew or should have known
on May 8, 1991, and thereafter, that Arkansas law provides that harassment,
including the touching or attempt or threat to do so which subjects the
victim to offensive or potentially offensive physical contact, is a criminal
violation of Arkansas Code Annotated 5-71-208.
54. While Jones was in Clinton's hotel suite, Jones was falsely imprisoned
by Clinton's intentional restriction of her personal freedom of movement
without legal right. Clinton's use of force in pulling Jones toward him, his
words and acts, and the armed police guard outside the door, in conjunction
with the impressive atmosphere of her being alone with the Governor of the
State who was also her superior's boss, caused her to be initially and,
temporarily afraid to terminate the meeting.
55. The statements, acts, and omissions of Clinton's agents, servants, and
employees who acted under his explicit and implicit instructions and
supervision, during the pertinent periods herein when he was Governor of
Arkansas, and after he became President, bind Clinton under the doctrines of
agency, joint conduct, master-servant, respondeat superior, and conspiracy.
56. The actions of the Arkansas state employees, including Defendant
Ferguson and other agents of Clinton were taken under color of state law.
57. Clinton's actions and omissions above stated caused Jones
embarrassment, humiliation, fear, emotional distress, horror, grief, shame,
marital discord and loss of reputation.
COUNT I DEPRIVATION OF CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVILEGES (42 U.S.C. @
58. Plaintiff incorporates by reference paragraphs 1 through 57.
59. Plaintiff is entitled to the equal protection of the laws under the
Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution, and due process of
law under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States
60. Defendant Clinton, as Governor of Arkansas, acting under color of state
law, discriminated against Plaintiff because of her gender by sexually
harassing and assaulting her on May 8, 1991, and thereafter, and this
deprived Jones of her right to equal protection of the law.
61. Further, he continued personally, and through agents, to impose a
hostile work environment on Plaintiff in which she feared the loss of her
employment and the possible adverse employment actions against her,
including job discrimination and monitoring of her personal life. As
described above she was placed in a category separate from other public
employees in that she was actually subjected to hostility by her superiors,
which deprived her of an opportunity for advancement and she suffered an
62. Plaintiff, as a citizen and Arkansas state employee, was entitled to
due process protection of freedom from arbitrary action which jeopardized
her property interest in her public employee job in that she should not have
been subjected arbitrarily to the fear of losing that job or of having to
provide sex to the Governor as a quid pro quo for keeping the job. Further,
she should not have been subjected arbitrarily to the fear of losing the
enjoyment of a proper and pleasant work environment, or to other adverse
actions which she feared and which deprived her of the proper enjoyment and
efficiency of her work. Clinton's actions deprived Jones of her due process
liberty and property interests guaranteed to her by the Constitution of the
63. Plaintiff also was entitled to a due process liberty interest in her
reputation as an honest public employee. Clinton's actions and statements
deprived Jones of these rights.
64. Plaintiff, for a brief period of time, was held against her will by the
oppressive atmosphere of intimidation caused by the presence of the highest
official of the State of Arkansas and an armed guard at the door. Not only
was she subjected to unwelcome sexual advances, but also was personally
restrained and imprisoned by the seizing of her person, against her will, by
Clinton and his agent.
65. The above-described actions of Clinton were undertaken when he was
acting under the color of state law, as Governor of Arkansas, and said
actions deprived Jones of federal equal protection and due process rights
guaranteed by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States
Constitution, and made actionable by 42 U.S.C. @ 1983 (The Civil Rights
COUNT II CONSPIRACY TO DEPRIVING PERSONS OF EQUAL PROTECTION OF THE LAWS (42
U.S.C. @ 1985)
66. Plaintiff incorporates by reference paragraphs 1 through 65.
67. Clinton conspired with his Security Detail, including with Defendant
Ferguson, and perhaps with others currently unknown to this Plaintiff, to
deprive Jones of equal protection of the laws and of equal privileges and
immunities under the laws, as further set forth in Count I above.
68. The conspirators committed some acts in furtherance of the conspiracy
which included contacting Jones and bringing her to Clinton on May 8, 1991
to permit him to attempt to entice her on to have a sexual liaison with him.
69. As a result of the conspiracy, Jones was injured by Defendants in her
person and property and deprived of having and exercising her rights and
privileges as a citizen of the United States, as is more fully set forth in
COUNT III INTENTIONAL INFLICTION OF EMOTIONAL DISTRESS
70. Plaintiff incorporates by reference paragraphs 1 through 69.
71. The conduct of Clinton herein set forth was odious, perverse and
outrageous. Not only were the acts of sexual perversity unwelcome by Jones,
but they were wilful, wanton, reckless, intentional, persistent and
continuous in the hotel room.
72. Clinton's sexual advances, assaults upon and imprisonment of Jones'
person, and his exposure of his erect penis and his requests of acts to be
performed thereupon were extreme, intentional, and caused Jones severe
73. Not content with the events in the hotel on May 8, 1991, Clinton on
subsequent occasions, acting himself and through his agents, as specified
above, aggravated further the initial severe emotional damage to Jones.
74. These actions were so outrageous in character, and extreme in degree,
as to go beyond all possible bounds of decency, and to be regarded as
atrocious and utterly intolerable in a civilized society.
COUNT IV DEFAMATION
75. Plaintiff incorporates by reference paragraphs 1 through 74.
76. On several occasions on and after February 11, 1994, Clinton, and his
agents and employees acting pursuant to his direction, maliciously and
wilfully, defamed Jones by making statements which Clinton knew to be false.
These statements were made with the intent and certain knowledge that they
would be reprinted in the print and other media.
77. Such statements by Clinton, his agents and employees, characterized
Jones as a liar and as being "pathetic," and damaged her good name,
character, and reputation.
78. Defendant Ferguson's statements likewise maliciously and will fully
defamed plaintiff and damaged her good name, character and reputation.
Ferguson's statement that Jones had agreed to be Clinton's girlfriend, and
his innuendo that she had willingly participated in a sexual encounter, were
79. That Ferguson knew these statements were false is confirmed by
Clinton's denial to Ferguson that anything happened of a sexual nature
between Clinton and Jones.
WHEREFORE, Plaintiff requests the following relief:
a. Count I, judgment against Defendant Clinton for compensatory damages of
$ 75,000.00; punitive damages for Defendant's wilful, outrageous and
malicious conduct, of $ 100,000.00; the costs of her suit and attorneys'
fees; nominal damages, and such other and further relief as the Court may
b. Count II, judgment against Defendant Clinton and Defendant Ferguson,
jointly and severally for compensatory damages of $ 75,000.00; punitive
damages for Defendant's wilful, outrageous and malicious conduct, of $
100,000.00; the costs of her suit and attorney's fees; nominal damages, and
such other and further relief as the Court may deem proper.
c. Count III, judgment against Defendant Clinton for compensatory damages
of $ 75,000.00; punitive damages for Defendant's wilful, outrageous and
malicious statements and conduct, of $ 100,000.00; the costs of her suit and
attorneys' fees; nominal damages, and such other and further relief as the
Court may deem proper.
d. Count IV, judgment against Defendant Clinton and Defendant Ferguson,
jointly and severally for compensatory damages of $ 75,000.00; punitive
damages for Defendant's wilful, outrageous and malicious statements and
conduct, of $ 100,000.00; the costs of her suit and attorneys' fees; nominal
damages, and such other and further relief as the Court may deem proper.
JURY TRIAL DEMANDED
Plaintiff demands a trial by jury on each of the counts.
PAULA CORBIN JONES By Her Counsel
Gilbert K. Davis, VA Bar #4683
Fairfax, Virginia. and
Joseph Cammarata, VA Bar #35118
EXHIBIT A (reproduction of January, 1994 American Spectator article.)
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