HeadsUp for Washington State: Court Opinions From Tuesday, January 14, 2014

HeadsUp for Washington State: Court Opinions From Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Tuesday, January 14, 2014 

To view the full text of these opinions, please visit: http://www.courts.wa.gov/opinions/index.cfm?fa=opinions.recent or Lexis subscribers may use the links below to access the cases on either lexis.com or Lexis Advance.


Division Two of the Court of Appeals filed 3 new published opinions and Division Three ordered the publication of 1 opinion on Tuesday, January 14, 2014:

Division Two:

1. In re Det. of R.H.
No. 44587-5
(January 14, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 48 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 48 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: DOMESTIC RELATIONS AND FAMILY LAW; CRIMINAL LAW

Brief: Substantial evidence supports the trial court's factual findings, and such findings support its conclusion that the detainee was gravely disabled.  However, the trial court lacked statutory authority under RCW 71.05.320(1) to commit the detainee for 180 days rather than for 90 days based on a finding of grave disability.

2. State v. Allen
No. 42257-3
(January 14, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 54 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 54 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: CRIMINAL LAW

Brief: In this prosecution against the defendant for first degree premeditated murder for his role in the murders of four police officers, there was sufficient evidence that the defendant knew his actions were furthering the crime and, although the prosecutor misstated the mental state required for accomplice liability, this did not prejudice the trial's outcome. Additionally, (1) exigent circumstances justified the warrantless entry into the defendant's motel room, (2) rendering criminal assistance is not a lesser included offense of first degree murder as an accomplice, (3) the sentence enhancement applied to the defendant as an accomplice because it was based on the victims' statuses and not his actions, and (4) the trial spectators' t-shirts did not violate the defendant's fair trial right because they did not convey a message of innocence or guilt.

3. In re Matter of Knight / Knight v. Knight
No. 43687-6
(January 14, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 47 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 47 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: DOMESTIC RELATIONS AND FAMILY LAW

Brief: A petitioner's standard of proof for a vulnerable adult protection order opposed by the alleged vulnerable adult is clear, cogent, and convincing evidence because the protection order implicates the vulnerable adult's liberty and autonomy interests.

Division Three:

Brownfield v. City of Yakima
No. 30994-1
(filed December 3, 2013; ordered published January 14, 2014)
2013 Wash. App. LEXIS 2736 (lexis.com)

2013 Wash. App. LEXIS 2736 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: COURTS; EMPLOYMENT LAW; GOVERNMENT RELATIONS AND ADMINISTRATIVE LAW

Brief: The City of Yakima terminated the plaintiff from employment. In response, the plaintiff complained he was wrongfully discharged and filed suit in federal court raising both state and federal claims. The federal court granted summary judgment on the federal claims and declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over the state law claims, dismissing those without prejudice. The plaintiff refiled his state law claims in state court, which granted summary judgment. The Court of Appeals affirms, holding that, although the claims asserted in state court are different from those asserted in federal court, issues resolved in federal court are determinative of some of the state claims, under the collateral estoppel doctrine. 

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