Tuesday, October 25, 2011

McClenahan v. Cooley case brief


-D drove his car to a public parking lot of a bank, while in the bank, he left his keys in the ignition, and a thief spotted them left there, stole the car, began driving it, was later involved in a high speed chase.
-D eventually ran a red light in a very busy intersection and slammed into another vehicle broadside killing P.’s pregnant wife and later on the child.
-Another young child in the vehicle had substantial injuries yet survived. D was employed as a law enforcement officer.

In order for there to be a cause of action for common law negligence, the following elements must be established.
1) A duty of care owed by the Def. to the Pl.
2) Conduct falling below the applicable standard of care amounting to a breach of that duty.
3) An injury or loss.
4) Causation in fact; and
5) Proximate, or legal, cause.

-There is no requirement that a cause to be regarded as the proximate cause of an injury be the sole cause, the last cause, or the nearest to the injury, provided it is a substantial factor in producing the end result.
“An intervening act will not exculpate the original wrongdoer of liability, provided that the negligent intervening act could not have been reasonably anticipated.”
“It is only where misconduct was to be anticipated, and taking the risk of it was unreasonable, that liability will be imposed for consequences to which such intervening acts contributed.”
As a result, the decisions with regard to foreseeability as it relates to proximate cause and intervening cause should properly be submitted to a jury.

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