Should the jury return a verdict in favor of Streater

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Should the jury return a verdict in favor of Streater

Please read the hypothetical below and click on the above link to respond to the questions.  This is a graded forum so, please, also react via posting to your fellow classmates’ responses.  Remember, you need to post your own answer first before you can see your classmates’ responses.

HYPOTHETICAL:

Officers Jones and Henderson are well-respected police officers in the Woodlawn community.  They have been recognized, both within the police department and by the community, for their outstanding service.  While on patrol in downtown Woodlawn late one evening, Jones and Henderson observe an individual sleeping on a park bench in the town square.  The individual is Fred Ames, a homeless person known in the community for his trouble with alcohol and illicit substances.  Ames has a twenty-year history of bad choices and bad luck, and most in Woodlawn “know his story.”  Woodlawn does not have a law against vagrancy or homelessness.

Determined to “clean up” the downtown area, the officers demand that Ames seat himself in the back of the squad car.  Reluctantly, and without the use of force on the part of Jones and Henderson, Ames complies.  Officers Jones and Henderson transport Ames to a rural area, where they release him on a dark country road, and warn him not to return to Woodlawn until he “cleans up his act once and for all.”

QUESTIONS:

Have Officers Jones and Henderson committed a tort against Ames? Are the officers within the “privilege of their authority” in removing Ames from the downtown area? Did the officers act unethically? Should Woodlawn implement a law against vagrancy/homelessness?

Answer: Because the area of Woodlawn has no laws against vagrancy or homelessness there was no reason for the officers to make Ames get into their squad car, therefore the officers are not within the privilege of their authority. That was illegal, he wasn’t under arrest for breaking any laws he was sleeping and was not a threat to anyone in doing so. Both officers are guilty of committing a tort of negligence against Ames when they left him in the rural area in the dark and on a road. thats completely dangerous and they might have gotten him killed or ran over and badly injured. I also think this would count as a false imprisonment charge because they made him get into their car even though Ames complied he may have been afraid as they are officers carrying weapons. In my opinion the officers did act unethically because they targeted a sleeping man, yes, i know the word around town is that Ames is bad news but a sleeping person can do you no harm.  The officers had their own goals to “clean up” the town which isn’t what they’re on the clock for. I don’t think Woodlawn should implement any laws against vagrancy or homelessness because unfortunately many people suffer mental instability and this causes them to be in this situation. Homeless people need help not to be ridiculed and outlawed for being vulnerable.

Please read the hypothetical below and and click on the above link to respond to the questions.  This is a graded forum so, please, also react via posting to your fellow classmates’ responses.  Remember, you need to post your own answer first before you can see your classmates’ responses.

HYPOTHETICAL:

Don Streater is driving his new Mustang on a two-lane road, Highway 101, on the outskirts of town.  The speed limit on Highway 101 is 45 miles per hour.  Albert Hunt is also driving on Highway 101, heading in the opposite direction from Streater.  Hunt looks to his passenger seat to find a map, when he veers across the center line into Streater’s direction of travel.  The two cars collide; luckily, neither man is killed, but Streater is seriously injured.  In financial terms, his medical injuries, medical expenses and pain and suffering are estimated at approximately one hundred thousand dollars.

Streater sues Hunt, alleging negligence on the part of the defendant.  The evidence at trial establishes that defendant Hunt was traveling at 50 miles per hour, that he had consumed three beers at lunch approximately 30 minutes before the accident occurred, that he has 20/50 uncorrected vision, and that he was not wearing his prescription eyeglasses at the time of the accident.  Evidence at trial also establishes that plaintiff Streater was traveling 50 miles per hour at the time of the accident, and that he was not wearing his seat belt when the collision occurred.

QUESTIONS:

Should the jury return a verdict in favor of Streater in the amount of one hundred thousand dollars (representing his medical injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering,) plus the associated costs of litigation? Does it matter whether the state in which the accident occurred recognizes the contributory or comparative negligence doctrine? In not wearing his seat belt, did plaintiff Streater “assume the risk?”

Answer:

Yes, I believe that the jury should return a verdict in favor of Streater in the amount of 100K. We need to prove four things here, they are duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. In my opinion we can prove all four points given the details of the case. First of all, as a driver before you can even obtain a drivers license you have to have proof that you a) have good vision or b) have corrective lenses or contacts so the fact that hunt drove on the highway without any corrective lenses was incredibly dangerous to himself and to other drivers on the road like Streater. With this fact alone we could prove breach of duty, not to mention his drinking. Speaking of which, Mr.Hunt had 3 beers only 30 minutes before deciding to operate his vehicle which again was incredibly dangerous to himself and other drivers and i believe that Mr.Hunts drinking is the nail in the coffin for this case. This fact alone might have been the difference between Mr.Streater almost dying and not getting into an accident at all. In my opinion the drinking was a direct causation. In a court of law i believe this would qualify as gross negligence. As far as the contributory and comparative negligence doctrines are concerned i don’t think it would matter one way or another which state this happened in and if they followed the doctrines or not because Mr.Streater although he did drive without his seatbelt he did not assume the risk of another driver veering into his lane and causing the injury, in fact he may have been hurt in spite of wearing a seatbelt altogether.

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