07 November 2007

third circuit upholds alexandria city court judge richard "cha-ching" starling

imagine this: you've just finished shopping at super one over on macarthur drive and are exiting the store. when suddenly someone snatches some cash from a clerks register and runs for the exit. super one employees give chase and in the process some grocery carts are pushed into you knocking you down. in louisiana this means that you just got paid.

judge starling wrote:

In this case the employees of Super One chased the suspect and in the process of the physical confrontation knocked either shopping baskets, or poles from the security gates at the entrance gate, into Ms. Waters. The court finds this to be a significant distinguishing factor and finds Super One employees failed to exercise reasonable care in protecting a patron from injury while attempting to recover property.

The court is of the opinion that a merchant who invites patrons to his store, must make sure he can initiate a physical arrest and confrontation with a suspect in a manner that does [not] cause undue risk of harm to the patrons. The court does not believe that was done in this case.

Accordingly, the court finds Super One responsible for the injuries sustained by Ms. Waters. The court does not reduce the recovery for the fault of the suspect since the duty to reasonable protect patrons while apprehending a suspect is the basis for liability, not the fact that the suspect may have simply initiated the chain of events leading to the plaintiff’s injury
and people wonder why louisiana is such a lousy state to do business in. if you're a business owner and find yourself being robbed you have to make a split second decision whether or not pursuing and/or apprehending a thief is worth it or not because if another patron is "hurt" in the process that could potentially cost you, in court, a lot more than what was stolen from you to begin with.

these types of legal theories and reasoning seems to do nothing but empower thieves, while penalizing the rest of the public with higher prices. after all, whats to stop a thief from stealing if they know that the business owner likely isnt going to pursue them because of judgments like this?

the best part of this case is that walker-passman got their ass spanked.