Judicial Stupidity – It’s Okay to Sue a Four Year Old Child
Justice Paul Wooten of State Supreme Court in Manhattan presumably doesn’t have children. He also apparently doesn’t have any common sense because he recently ruled that:
Infants under the age of 4 are conclusively presumed incapable of negligence, Juliet Breitman, however, was over the age of 4 at the time of the subject incident. For infants above the age of 4, there is no bright-line rule.
Juliet was 4 years 9 months old when her tricycle when she struck an 87-year-old woman who was walking in front of the building.
Judge Wooten added that any “reasonably prudent child,” who presumably has been told to look both ways before crossing a street, should know that dashing out without looking is dangerous, with or without a parent there. The crucial factor is whether the parent encourages the risky behavior; if so, the child should not be held accountable.”
In this case, however, there was nothing to indicate that Juliet’s mother “had any active role in the alleged incident, only that the mother was ‘supervising,’ a term that is too vague to hold meaning here,” he wrote. He concluded that there was no evidence of Juliet’s “lack of intelligence or maturity” or anything to “indicate that another child of similar age and capacity under the circumstances could not have reasonably appreciated the danger of riding a bicycle into an elderly woman.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. truly summed up this court’s decision when he said “this is a court of law, young [child], not a court of justice.”