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Brown v. Poway Unified School District

843 P.2d 624 (1993)

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Brown v. Poway Unified School District

California Supreme Court

843 P.2d 624 (1993)

Facts

Francis Brown (plaintiff) was a self-employed computer repairman who was delivering computers to a Poway Unified School District (the district) (defendant) building. The building was kept locked, and a district employee had to unlock the door to let nonemployees in. On his fifth trip carrying computers into the building, Brown slipped on a piece of lunchmeat and fell in the hallway. In addition to district employees, two other visitors, both equipment vendors, were in the hallway before Brown’s fall. No one saw a piece of lunchmeat on the floor. An employee picnic area was nearby, but no one had seen anyone eating there that morning. Students were not present in this area. Brown filed a negligence action against the district, and the district moved for summary judgment, arguing that Brown could not show that the district had created the dangerous condition. Brown argued that res ipsa loquitur applied. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of the district. The appellate court reversed and held that res ipsa loquitur did apply. The district appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Panelli, J.)

Dissent (Mosk, J.)

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