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Zittrain Torts Playlist Spring 2013

Kendra Knight, Plaintiff and Appellant, v. Michael Jewett, Defendant and Respondent.

Headnote

Should courts recognize an implied "assumption of risk" when individuals participate in activities where physical contact is routine? Plaintiff and defendant were on opposing sides in a game of touch football. No explicit rules were written down or discussed prior to the game, except that a two-handed touch above the waist would stop the advancement of another player. During the game, defendant played roughly, prompting the plaintiff to warn the defendant not to play so rough or she would quit the game. Later in the game, the defendant knocked the plaintiff over while intercepting a pass. When the defendant landed, he stepped on and injured the plaintiff's little finger. After three unsuccessful surgeries, the plaintiff had her finger amputated during a fourth surgery.