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Torts Keyed to Dobbs
Yang v. Hardin
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
In January 1991, Plaintiff, co-owner of a shoe store, received a call from his alarm company notifying him that the store had been burglarized. He called the police and Defendants. Chicago police officers had already arrived at the store when Plaintiff got there. Plaintiff’s employee and brother were repairing the shattered front display window, while Defendant prepared a police report by the front door of the store, adjacent to the broken window. Officer Brown entered the store to investigate. As Officers Brown and Hardin were about to leave, Plaintiff noticed a bulge in Officer Brown’s jacket. Believing that Officer Brown had stolen some merchandise, Yang approached the officer and asked him to return the merchandise. Officer Brown denied having taken anything. The discussion then escalated into an argument, Officer Brown reached into his jacket, and pulled out a pair of “L.A. Raiders” shorts and threw them at Plaintiff. The officers then went to their car. Plaintiff followe d, and Officer Brown shoved him. During the confrontation, Defendant stood by the passenger door of the squad car and did not speak or intervene in any manner despite Plaintiff’s repeated requests for him to call the police sergeant. To prevent Officer Brown from leaving, Plaintiff held onto the driver’s side door of the squad car to keep it open. However, Officer Brown drove anyway, with the driver’s side door ajar and Plaintiff hanging onto the car. Officer Brown drove fast and recklessly attempting to throw Plaintiff off of the car. Officer Brown also repeatedly struck Plaintiff in the ribs with his left elbow. Plaintiff maintains that he was unable to let go of the car without being run over. Defendant sat in the passenger seat, throughout. He did not say anything or in any way attempt to intervene. The squad car traveled, with Plaintiff hanging on, more than two full city blocks until two men on the sidewalk saw what was happening and ran out to the street to stop the police car. Plaintiff let go when the car stopped. Officer Brown then got out of the car and punched Plaintiff in the face, knocking him to the ground. When Plaintiff’s brother, who had run after the squad car, arrived at the scene, Officer Brow n knocked him to the ground. Throughout these events, Defendant did not call the sergeant or attempt to stop Officer Brown in any way. However, as the Yang brothers lay in the street, Defendant got out of the passenger seat of the squad car, drew his gun, pointed it at the brothers and shouted obscenities at them. The Yangs froze. Officers Hardin and Brown got back in the police car and drove away. Yang pressed criminal charges against both officers. Officer Brown entered a plea and was convicted of official misconduct. Defendant was convicted at a bench trial of three felonies: theft, official misconduct and aggravated assault. Plaintiff also filed an action under Section 1983, with supplemental state law claims of common law false imprisonment, negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault and battery. Both Officers Hardin and Brown defaulted. The district court found against Officer Brown and ordered damages for medical bills, physical injuries, lost income, emotional and psychological injuries, and punitive damages. The court also awarded attorney’s fees against Officer Brown. The district court concluded that, as a matter of law, Defendant was not liable for violating Section 1983, nor for the state common law claims. Plaintiff appealed.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.