A New York State judge has ruled that 4-year-olds, racing bicycles with training wheels, can be sued for negligence for running down an elderly woman on a Manhattan sidewalk.
Judge Paul Wooten of the State Supreme Court in Manhattan dug way back to cases from 1928 to rule that the a personal injury suit filed by the family of Claire Menagh can proceed, The New York Times reported.
The suit alleges that in the spring of 2009 Juliet Breitman and Jacob Kohn, both 4, were racing their bikes on a sidewalk on East 52nd Street when Breitman stuck Menagh, 87.
Menagh was "seriously and severely injured," fractured a hip and died three months later of unrelated causes, the paper reported.
Her estate sued the children and their mothers, Dana Breitman and Rachel Kohn, who were supervising them at the time of the accident.
Defense attorneys have argued in trying to dismiss the suit that Juliet Breitman is too young to be negligent citing cases from 82 years ago that found children under the age of 4 are "conclusively presumed to be incapable of negligence."
However, Wooten ruled that the personal injury suit could continue because Juliet was three months shy of her fifth birthday when the accident occurred.
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Noteworthy examples include:
• $85 million for a man who fractured his spine after falling through an open manhole
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• $20.8 million verdict for an amputation injury
• $18.4 million verdict for a child who suffered a stroke
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