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Intent_Garratt_v_Dailey

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					Garratt vs. Dailey, Supreme Court of Washington, 1955

Facts
D. pulled a chair from behind P. causing P to fall, fracture her hip and sustain other painful and serious injuries.

Procedure
Unwilling to accept/allow P’s argument, Lower court adopted D’s version of events and judgment was made in favor of D. P appeals from a judgment dismissing the action and asks for the entry of a judgment in the amount of the damages or a new trial.

Issue
Did D. commit battery even though he did not intentionally mean to harm P. or play a prank on her.

Plaintiff might argue
D. committed battery because he intentionally inflicted injury to P. when he moved the chair knowing that P. knowing that she was trying to sit on it.

Defendant might argue
I didn’t know she was going to sit in the chair – when I saw that was going to sit, I tried to put the chair under her so she wouldn’t fall.

Law
A minor can be proceeded against as an adult when that minor commits a tort with force. If a person commits a wrongful act, then he is liable for any resulting injuries Battery is committed if 1. infliction of bodily harms or apprehension results. AND 2. (Intent is present when an actor knows that his action will lead to either apprehension or contact. OR 3. Person realizes with substantial certainty that action will result in contact or apprehension.)

Reasoning
Based on the facts accepted by the lower court and this court, 2 can be ruled out: D. did not have the intention to hurt or embarrass D. 1 was established! If (3) is established, that is, if D. knew that P. was going to sit on the chair, then D. would be liable. The lower court did not seem to consider (3) in its findings. Therefore, the lower court should be asked to clarify its position on (3) and modify its judgment if necessary based on the findings.

Holding
Remanded for clarification. Lower court is asked to clarify its finding as to whether D. knew with substantial certainty that P. was going to sit on chair. Lower court could change judgment if findings warrant it.


				
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posted:5/16/2009
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