Tuesday, August 18, 2009

No Liability For Graduation Kegger That Turned Violent

Not a Legal Profession case, but of possible interest is a decision yesterday from the Washington Court of Appeals Division 1. The court's holding:

 Should civil liability be imposed upon those who plan and
furnish beer for a high school graduation keg party where criminal violence
erupts?  The appellant Hazel Cameron is the mother of a boy who died as a
result of being assaulted at a kegger.  She requests that a jury be allowed to
decide whether the assault was a foreseeable result of providing unlimited beer
to teenagers in a remote location without supervision.  But to maintain either a
common law or statutory cause of action for assault caused by the negligent
furnishing of alcohol to minors, the plaintiff must prove that the assailant had
violent tendencies known to the furnishers.  Because the record lacks such
proof, the trial court did not err in dismissing the case on summary judgment.

(Mike Frisch)



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