Torts Keyed to Prosser
Nearing v. Weaver
In 1977, the Legislative Assembly enacted the Abuse Prevention Act (Act) to strengthen legal protection for persons threatened with assault by a present or former spouse or a cohabitant. The means chosen for this purpose included the use of temporary restraining orders, injunctions, and temporary child custody orders, and mandatory provisions for a warrantless arrest upon probable cause of a person believed to have violated such an order. Henrietta Nearing and her two children (Plaintiffs), alleged that Martin Weaver (Weaver), the children’s father and Ms. Nearing’s husband, unlawfully entered their home and assaulted their family. A restraining order was issued against Weaver. After the order was issued, Weaver again illegally entered Plaintiffs’ home, assaulting the Plaintiffs and damaging their home. Plaintiffs state that that police officer called to the home declined to arrest Weaver because he had not seen the husband on the premises. Plaintiff also alleges that Weaver c ontinued to seek entry into the home. Plaintiffs’ complaint states that the police officers of St. Helens, New Orleans (Defendants), had knowledge that Weaver violated his restraining order. In addition, they allege that the proximate result of their failure to arrest Weaver, was that Ms. Nearing suffered acute emotional distress, difficulty sleeping, and psychological impairment. The case is on appeal from the circuit court’s summary judgment for Defendants, affirmed by the court of appeals.
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