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Brunner v. Hutchinson Division, Lear-Siegler, Inc.

United States District Court for the District of South Dakota
770 F. Supp. 517 (1991)


Laurie Brunner was ill and unable to care for her two-year-old son, Jeremiah Brunner. Jeremiah’s father, Brad Brunner (Brad) (plaintiff), was looking after Jeremiah for the day. Brad drove Jeremiah to a grain bin and told Jeremiah to stay in the truck. Outside of the grain bin, Brad started a grain auger, a machine with spinning blades. Brad then went into the grain bin to transfer grain. When Brad emerged from the grain bin, he found Jeremiah near the auger. Jeremiah’s right hand had been traumatically amputated. Brad, as the ward of Jeremiah, sued Hutchinson Division, Lear-Sigler Inc., the maker of the auger (Hutchinson) (defendant). After being sued, Hutchinson brought a third-party complaint against Brad and Brad’s farm partnership, H.L. Brunner & Sons (defendant). Hutchinson sought indemnity or contribution from Brad and his partnership. Brad and the partnership urged the court that they were protected by parental immunity and filed a summary-judgment motion seeking dismissal of the third-party complaint.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Battey, J.)

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