Manning v. Grimsley case brief summary
643 F.2d 20 (1981)
Plaintiff spectator challenged an order
of the United States District Court for the District of
Massachusetts, which entered a directed verdict for defendants,
pitcher and baseball club, in plaintiff's battery action.
CASE FACTS Plaintiff spectator brought an action
sounding in battery and negligence against defendants, pitcher and
baseball club. The district court entered a directed verdict on the
battery count, and the jury returned a general verdict for defendants
on the negligence count. Plaintiff appealed only the directed verdict
on battery. The appellate court vacated and remanded for a new trial,
holding that the jury could have found a battery on facts that the
pitcher was expert, looked at the spectators several times
immediately following heckling, and that the ball traveled at a right
angle from the direction in which he had been pitching.
tort law, absolute liability was imposed whether the harm was
intended at plaintiff or a third person.
Further, plaintiff was not
collaterally estopped from asserting battery simply because he did
not appeal the adverse negligence judgment.
Rather, the general
verdict did not conclusively determine that the pitch into the stands
was not intentional.
Further, the judgment was reversed as to the
baseball club also, as the jury could have found that the heckling
interfered with the pitcher's ability to perform his job.
The appellate court vacated the district court's directed verdict
in favor of defendants, pitcher and baseball club, in plaintiff
spectator's battery action and remanded for a new trial because the
jury could have found from the facts that the pitch into the stands
was intentional, an adverse negligence judgment did not conclusively
determine the issue of intent, and the heckling could be found to
have interfered with the pitcher's job. Recommended Supplements for Corporations and Business Associations Law
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