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City of Scottsdale v. Kokaska

Arizona Court of Appeals
495 P.2d 1327 (1972)


Facts

Francene Kokaska (plaintiff) was injured on a public road in the City of Scottsdale, Arizona (city) (defendant), when the car she was travelling in was struck from behind by a police patrol car that was being driven by Officer Dwight Edwards (Officer Edwards) (defendant). The accident occurred when Officer Edwards was chasing a speeding driver and he swerved to avoid hitting a motor scooter that was stopped in the center lane to make a left-hand turn. Kokaska testified that the patrol car did not have its flashing red lights or its siren operating when she was hit. Kokaska’s theory of Officer Edwards’s duty owed to her was based on Officer Edwards’s violation of numerous statutory rules of the road and his failure to use his siren, which Kokaska alleged resulted in her injuries and makes the case one about negligence per se or negligence as a matter of law. Officer Edwards and the city wanted to argue that the presence of an unlit motor scooter in the middle of the roadway on the night of the accident was a crucial issue for the jury and requested two specific jury instructions relating to foreseeability, which the trial court denied. The jury returned a verdict for Kokaska and Officer Edwards, and the city appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Eubank, J.)

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