A postal employee sued the postmaster on the ground that he committed assault and battery upon the employee by smoking cigars in his presence. A Superior Court judge dismissed the complaint. On appeal, the North Carolina Court of Appeals ruled that the postmaster’s smoking cigars in his own office when he knew that was obnoxious to the employee did not amount to assault and battery, where the employee did not suffer any physical illness from inhaling the smoke. While the employee did suffer “some mental distress as a result of inhaling the cigar smoke,” that evidence was not enough to support a claim for assault and battery.
252 S.E.2d 250, 40 N.C. App. 214 (1979).