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Intentional Torts. 1. Kingsley Lear is an English professor. Upset because a student, Hamlet, was eating a sandwich during class, Lear hurled a hardbound.

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Presentation on theme: "Intentional Torts. 1. Kingsley Lear is an English professor. Upset because a student, Hamlet, was eating a sandwich during class, Lear hurled a hardbound."— Presentation transcript:

1 Intentional Torts

2 1. Kingsley Lear is an English professor. Upset because a student, Hamlet, was eating a sandwich during class, Lear hurled a hardbound copy of Shakespeare ’ s Collected Plays at Hamlet. The book missed Hamlet, who was so intent on devouring his sandwich that he did not realize the book had been thrown. The book instead struck Othello, who was deep in thought and did not see the airborne book before it struck him. Othello was not physically harmed, but was outraged at what had transpired.

3 When class ended, Lear noticed that as usual, Romeo and Juliet were locked in a steamy embrace. An irritated Lear waited until all students except Romeo and Juliet had left the second-floor classroom. He then locked the room ’ s only door, leaving Romeo and Juliet inside. The room had two open windows, which were seen by Romeo and Juliet. They remained in the room for one hour, after which time a custodian noticed they were there and let them out. On these facts, what torts has Lear committed?

4 a. Assault as to Hamlet and assault and battery as to Othello b. Assault as to Hamlet, battery as to Othello, and false imprisonment as Romeo and Juliet c. Battery as to Othello and false imprisonment as to Romeo and Juliet. d. Assault as to Hamlet, as to Othello, and as to Romeo and Juliet

5 Katko v. Briney Facts The Brineys owned an uninhabited farmhouse. For about ten years, there were a series of trespasses on the property by people who vandalized the premises. To stop the unlawful intrusions, the Brineys boarded up the windows and posted “ no trespass ” signs outside. Still, the incidents continued. The Brineys responded with more drastic measures. The attached a 20-gauge shotgun to an iron bed in the farmhouse bedroom, pointing the barrel at the bedroom door. It was wired so that when anyone broke

6 into the farmhouse and turned the doorknob of the bedroom, the shotgun would go off. The gun could not be seen from the outside. Katko knew of the premises. He had invaded it on a prior occasion and had stolen antique bottles and fruit jars. On a second trip to the Briney property, Katko and a companion entered the house through a window. When Katko opened the bedroom door, the shotgun went off and a part of his right leg was blown away.

7 Katko was hospitalized for 40 days, his leg was in a cast for about a year; and he wore a special brace for another year. Additionally, Karto suffered a permanent shortening of the leg. Katko sued the Brineys, seeking damages for willful and wanton injuries inflicted on him. If you were a judge, how could you decide the case?

8 Legal issue: Whether an owner may protect personal property in an unoccupied, boarded-up farm house against trespassers and thieves by a spring gun capable of inflicting death or serious injury Decision: No. judgment affirmed. Reasoning: (1)An owner of premises is prohibited from willful or intentionally injuring a trespasser by means of force that either takes life or inflicts great bodily injury;

9 (2) Therefore a person owning a premise is prohibited from setting out “ spring gun ” and like dangerous devices which will likely take life or inflict great bodily injury, for the purpose of harming trespassers. (3) The fact that the trespasser may be acting in violation of the law does not change the rule. (4) The only time when such conduct of setting a “ spring gun ” or like dangerous devices is justified would be when the trespasser was committing a felony of voilence or a felony punishable by death

10 or where the trespasser was endangering human life by his act.

11 Bonskowski v. Arlan ’ s Department Store Facts : false arrest & verdict  P D (customer) (Department store)  the appeal the jury verdict of the trial court  the plaintiff ’ s claims the defendant ’ s motions

12 Legal issue: Whether the concept of privilege can be applied in this case Decision: reversed and remand for new trial. Reasoning: 1. Clarify the legal principle governing this case: (1) what privilege a merchant enjoys (2)under what circumstances he enjoys such privilege (3)why it is necessary to grand merchant such privilege

13 (The appeal court stresses the concept of privilege in false arrest case involving shoplifting, whereas the trial court and the jury made no consideration to this defense.) 2. Extend this privilege to the special circumstances of this case----the detention of one who has left the premises but in their immediate vicinity 3. Remand the case to the trial court for a new trial with instruction----it will be the duty of the jury to decide (1) whether … and (2) whether …

14 ?


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