Monday, November 11, 2013

Linegar v. Armour of America case brief

Linegar v. Armour of America case brief summary
909 F.2d 1150 (8th Cir. 1990)


CASE SYNOPSIS
Appellant manufacturer sought review of a judgment of the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri in favor of appellee widow with respect to a products liability action brought by the widow against the manufacturer.

CASE FACTS

A state trooper was shot and killed while wearing the manufacturer's bullet-resistant vest. The fatal shot struck a part of the trooper's body that was not protected by the vest. The widow brought an action against the manufacturer that asserted a claim for strict liability for defective design. The district court entered judgment in favor of the widow based on a jury verdict.

DISCUSSION

  • On appeal, the court reversed the district court's judgment. 
  • The court held that, as a matter of law, the evidence was insufficient to present a submissible products liability case. 
  • The court concluded, as a matter of law, that the vest the trooper was wearing was not defective and unreasonably dangerous. 
  • The court found that there was simply no evidence that the vest's design made it unreasonably dangerous. 
  • The court ruled that the otherwise completely effective vest could not be regarded as unreasonably dangerous simply because it left some parts of the body obviously exposed. 
  • The court found that the district court should have declared, as a matter of law, that the vest was not defective and directed a verdict or granted judgment for the manufacturer notwithstanding the verdict.

CONCLUSION

The court reversed the district court's judgment in favor of the widow in this products liability action. The court directed the district court to enter a final judgment in favor of the manufacturer.

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