Katko Vs Brriney Case Summary

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In the case of Katko v. Briney, the plaintiff entered what he thought to be an uninhabited, abandoned home with the intent to get antique jars. He believed the house to be abandoned due to the lack of maintenance of the property. While in the process of finding the jars, the plaintiff triggered a spring gun trap, which blew away a portion of the plaintiff’s leg, including the tibia. The defendant was the owner of the home. Due to the house constantly being broken into, the defendant made an unseen spring gun trap in the north bedroom. The plaintiff suffered severe injuries from the spring gun trap and as a result has brought his case to court. The defendant gained possession of the property in 1957. In the ten-year period of 1957 to 1967,…show more content…
This was tried in front of a jury of the defendant’s peers whom were selected from the defendant’s community. The major issue with this case is if a person is allowed to exercise potentially deadly actions to protect their property when they are not in danger. The Supreme Court of Ohio upheld the lower courts decision. This was in agreement with the similar cases of Hooker v. Miller, Allison v. Fiscus, and United Zinc & Chemical Co. v. Britt. Many jurisdictions have also held a landowner criminally liable for serious injuries or homicide caused by a spring gun other set devices. I am in disagreement of the courts decisions. This is protecting the person who is breaking and entering the house unlawfully as opposed to the landowner. In this spring gun trap, the property owner had no idea of what the man breaking into his house could be looking for. This is for the protection of the owner of the house. It is possible that the intruder intended to do harm to whomever was on the property. There are no statutory provisions that govern the right an owner to defend their property by a spring gun or other devices. I would say that, unless the property owner is intending to kill or seriously injure the intruder, then the owner does not have absolute liability of the injuries that the intruder has
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