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Turner v. Duggin

Court of Appeals of Texas, Sixth District, Texarkana

February 2, 2017, Submitted; March 31, 2017, Decided

No. 06-16-00046-CV

Reporter

532 S.W.3d 473 *; 2017 Tex. App. LEXIS 2786 **; 2017 WL 2118971

PAULA KAYE TURNER AND TIMOTHY RAY TURNER, Appellants v. JENNIFER DUGGIN, Appellee

Prior History:  [**1] On Appeal from the 415th District Court, Parker County, Texas. Trial Court No. CV14-1551.

Case Summary

Overview

HOLDINGS: [1]-In appellee's personal injury action to recover damages from a dog bite, the jury's finding of gross negligence was supported by clear and convincing evidence because appellants' blue heeler mix canine was a vicious dog and appellants failed to contain him even though they knew he had bitten others and was escaping from their yard; [2]-The evidence showed that appellant trained the dog to bite people and it had a history of biting others; [3]-Because the nature, duration, and severity of appellee's injuries and their impact on her life were well established by the record, the evidence was sufficient to support a $350,000 award for future physical pain and mental anguish; [4]-As the award of exemplary damages was 18% of the compensatory damages award and less than $200,000, it was within the limitation set forth in Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Ann. § 41.008(b) (2015).

Outcome

Judgment affirmed.

LexisNexis® Headnotes

Civil Procedure > ... > Standards of Review > Substantial Evidence > Sufficiency of Evidence

HN1  Sufficiency of Evidence

In determining legal sufficiency, the appellate court examines whether the evidence at trial would enable reasonable and fair-minded people to reach the verdict under review. In looking at the evidence, the appellate court credit favorable evidence if a reasonable jury could and disregard contrary evidence unless a reasonable jury could not. The evidence is legally insufficient if: (1) the record discloses a complete absence of evidence of a vital fact; (2) the court is barred by rules of law or of evidence from giving weight to the only evidence offered to prove a vital fact; (3) the evidence offered to prove a vital fact is no more than a mere scintilla; or (4) the evidence establishes conclusively the opposite of a vital fact.

Civil Procedure > ... > Standards of Review > Substantial Evidence > Sufficiency of Evidence

HN2  Sufficiency of Evidence

More than a scintilla of evidence exists when the evidence reaches a level enabling reasonable and fair-minded people to differ in their conclusions. Less than a scintilla of evidence exists when the evidence is so weak as to do no more than create a mere surmise or suspicion of a fact. When reviewing a jury verdict for factual sufficiency of the evidence, the appellate court considers and weighs all the evidence and only sets aside the verdict if the appellate court determines that the credible evidence supporting the finding is so weak, or so contrary to the overwhelming weight of all the evidence, that the answer should be set aside and a new trial ordered.

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