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Kentucky Fried Chicken of California, Inc. v. Superior Court

Supreme Court of California
927 P.2d 1260 (1997)


Facts

Kathy Brown (plaintiff) was the only customer in a Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) (defendant) restaurant when a robber entered and held Brown at gunpoint. The robber told the KFC cashier to give him all of the money in the cash register. The cashier initially refused, at which point the robber became agitated and angry. The robber told the cashier that he would shoot Brown if the cashier did not give him the money. Eventually, the cashier opened the register and gave the robber the money. The robber took the money and fled. Brown brought suit against KFC, alleging that the cashier had a duty to comply with the robber’s demands, and her failure to do so increased the risk of harm to Brown. KFC filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that the cashier had no duty to comply with the robber’s demands. The superior court denied KFC’s motion for summary judgment. The court of appeal affirmed. KFC appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Baxter, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
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Dissent (Kennard, J.)

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Dissent (Mosk, J.)

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