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Doe v. Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

Court of Appeals of Utah
106 P.3d 743 (2004)


Facts

George Tilson worshipped in the same church congregation as Jane Doe (plaintiff) and her son, John (plaintiff). Tilson was a scout leader in the church-sponsored troop. Additionally, Tilson held the title high priest, denoting that Tilson was morally upstanding and deserving of trust. In 1976, when Jane was 13 years old, Tilson lured Jane into his home and fondled her. Sometime between 1993 and 1996, Tilson lured Jane’s son, John, into his home from a neighbor’s yard and sexually abused John. In 2001, Jane learned from the news that the Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (COP) (defendant) may have known that Tilson was a child abuser prior to his abuse of her and John. The plaintiffs sued COP, alleging that COP negligently failed to warn Jane of Tilson’s prior bad acts. The trial court dismissed the plaintiffs’ complaint. The plaintiffs appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Greenwood, J.)

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  • 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.).

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