Logourl black
From our private database of 14,000+ case briefs...

Crinkley v. Holiday Inns, Inc.

United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
844 F.2d 156 (1988)


Facts

In February 1981, James and Sarah Crinkley (plaintiffs) were weekend guests at the Holiday Inn Concord, a hotel owned by Holiday Inns, Inc. (Holiday Inn) (defendant) near Charlotte, North Carolina. During the two weeks prior to the Crinkleys’ stay, guests at several local motels had been robbed and assaulted by a group called the Motel Bandits by the media. Brian McRorie, the assistant manager of the Holiday Inn Concord, learned of the Motel Bandits through the news. McRorie was also contacted by the sheriff’s office, which notified him of the threat and told him that off-duty police officers were available to serve as security personnel for a fee. McRorie asked his supervisory manager Jim Van Over about hiring extra security personnel. Van Over decided that any hiring was not justified. Subsequently, immediately after the Crinkleys arrived at the Holiday Inn Concord, they were severely beaten and threatened at gunpoint by armed men. The attack began outside the hotel and continued in the Crinkleys’ hotel room. James sustained a severely broken jaw and multiple bruises to his head and upper body. Sarah, who was 66 years old and had been under treatment for hypertension and obesity prior to the assault, suffered a heart attack 14 months after the assault. After an unsuccessful balloon angioplasty, Sarah had heart-bypass surgery. Furthermore, Sarah’s friends and family reported that her personality became much more fearful, anxious, and withdrawn after the assault. In 1984, Sarah began seeing a psychiatrist, who diagnosed her with post-traumatic stress disorder. The Crinkleys sued Holiday Inn in district court, alleging negligence due to the provision of inadequate security, and further alleging that this negligence caused the Crinkleys’ injuries. The Crinkleys presented medical evidence that Sarah’s heart attack was primarily caused by stress from the assault, that her psychological issues were caused by the assault, and that the assault was reasonably foreseeable by Holiday Inn. The jury awarded $400,000 to Sarah and $100,000 to James in compensatory damages. Holiday Inn appealed, arguing that there was insufficient evidence connecting the heart attack and psychological issues to the assault. Holiday Inn also argued that these injuries should not have been submitted to the jury as compensable items of damage.

Rule of Law

The rule of law is the black letter law upon which the court rested its decision.

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

Issue

The issue section includes the dispositive legal issue in the case phrased as a question.

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

Holding and Reasoning (Phillips, J.)

The holding and reasoning section includes:

  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

Dissent (Wilkinson, J.)

The dissent section is for members only and includes a summary of the dissenting judge or justice’s opinion.

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 175,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.