(PLAINTIFF) v. J.C. PENNEY COMPANY, INC.
Premises Liability/Assault/False Imprisonment/Malicious Prosecution/Punitive Damages. J.C. Penney Loss Prevention personnel attempted to detain plaintiff when he was caught shoplifting a tie. The resulting melee resulted in a broken nose to one of the Loss Prevention Officers. The individual whose nose was broken went on to graduate school at Yale University. Another Loss Prevention Officer became a Los Angeles County police officer. The third is a long-term employee of J.C. Penney and a now a Loss Prevention supervisor. The plaintiff’s behavior got so bizarre that the court assigned Los Angeles County sheriff deputies to escort defense counsel to and from the many court appearances. The case went to trial and our pro per opponent was an admirable, if delusional, opponent. The court allowed plaintiff to testify by way of narrative from the stand. Plaintiff’s direct examination of the Loss Prevention Officers was surreal. At times it seemed like we were watching the “Law and Order” episode on television based on a true story of the New York Subway shooting, where the crazy defendant gets to terrorize the victims on the stand. The trial lasted a week. After approximately one day of deliberations, the jury decided for the defense. The fact that we lost two jurors to the plaintiff causes one to shudder.