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Lemoine v. Stroo

March 24, 1998

LEMOINE
v.
STROO



Before Bridges, C.j., Herring, Payne, And Southwick, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Payne, J

HAMPTON LEMOINE, APPELLANT v. THOMAS STROO, APPELLEE

THIS OPINION IS NOT DESIGNATED FOR PUBLICATION AND MAY NOT BE CITED, PURSUANT TO M.R.A.P. 35-B

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 09/18/96

TRIAL JUDGE: HON. KOSTA N. VLAHOS

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: HANCOCK COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - PERSONAL INJURY

TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: DIRECTED VERDICT FOR DEFENDANT GRANTED.

DISPOSITION AFFIRMED - 3/24/98

This appeal arises from a premises liability case in which the Hancock County Circuit Court entered a directed verdict in favor of appellee Thomas Stroo. Thomas Stroo initially moved for summary judgment and was overruled. Following appellant Hampton Lemoine's case-in-chief, Stroo moved for a directed verdict and was overruled. Stroo then rested without presenting any evidence. The trial Judge recessed the trial overnight. The following day the trial Judge entered a directed verdict in favor of Stroo. Finding no error, we affirm.

FACTS

On December 9, 1994, Lemoine was on Stroo's property having been hired to do some carpentry work for Stroo. One of Lemoine's tasks consisted of installing a screen on the exterior porch on the second floor of Stroo's fish camp. The testimony indicated that Lemoine, using his own extension ladder, placed the ladder against the building with the bottom of the ladder resting on a wooden walkway. Lemoine testified that he tested the ladder by bouncing up and down on the bottom rungs prior to climbing to the second floor. Satisfied that the ladder was stable, Lemoine climbed the ladder and began installing the screen on the second floor porch. Lemoine testified that as he was completing the screening, he felt the ladder give way to his right. The testimony indicated that Lemoine fell approximately seventeen feet striking the concrete patio and the wooden walkway below. Lemoine claims that he suffered serious injuries to his arm, wrist, and hips resulting in painful and permanent personal injuries. Lemoine alleges that the wooden walkway upon which his ladder was braced gave way causing the ladder to shift resulting in Lemoine's fall. Lemoine alleges further that Stroo knew that the wooden walkway was not stable and therefore had a duty to repair it or, at the very least, warn Lemoine of the danger.

ANALYSIS

I. WHETHER THE TRIAL COURT ERRED AS A MATTER OF LAW IN GRANTING STROO'S MOTION ...


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