Merrill v. A. R. G.

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Civil Law
  • Date Filed: 06-28-2017
  • Case #: A158790
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Tookey, J for the Court; Sercombe, J.; & DeHoog, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

“Proof that a defendant had probable cause is a complete defense to a claim for malicious prosecution.” Mathre v. Multnomah County, 35 Or App 75, 79, 581 P2d 88 (1978).

Defendant appealed a judgment for malicious prosecution. Defendant assigned error when the trial court denied his motions for directed verdict on the grounds that he lacked probable cause. On appeal, Defendant argued he had probable cause to believe the Plaintiff criminally trespassed based on the facts and circumstances of the proceedings. “Proof that a defendant had probable cause is a complete defense to a claim for malicious prosecution.” Mathre v. Multnomah County, 35 Or App 75, 79, 581 P2d 88 (1978). The Court of Appeals held that Defendant had probable cause to believe that Plaintiff criminally trespassed because Plaintiff was aware he did not have privilege or license to be on the property. Therefore, the trial court erred in denying Defendant’s motion for directed verdict on the malicious-prosecution claim. Judgment on claim for malicious prosecution reversed and remanded for entry of judgment in favor of defendant; otherwise affirmed. 

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