DODGE v. HOMEOWNERS
Decision Date: September 14, 2016
Case Number: 14-CV-0670
State of Wisconsin/Circuit Court/Eau Claire County
Intentional Battery/Castle Doctrine
In a one-day trial to the court, defense counsel, including Melita Mullen, secured a decision in favor of defendant homeowners. In the context of an alleged “road rage” incident, plaintiff claimed that one of the defendants intentionally assaulted him, resulting in permanent loss of vision in one eye. Defendants proved that the alleged battery began in their private driveway rather than on the public roadway, and successfully asserted affirmative defenses of the castle doctrine and self-defense. The court found that use of intentional force occurred under the reasonable belief that the force was necessary to prevent injury and found no civil liability on the part of the defendant homeowner for the injury to plaintiff.