Vasilenko v. Grace Gamily ChurchAnnotate this Case
Plaintiff Aleksandr Vasilenko was hit by a car and injured while crossing Marconi Avenue in Sacramento. At the time, he was crossing a busy five-lane road on his way from an overflow parking lot controlled and staffed by defendant Grace Family Church (GFC or the church) to a function at the church. Vasilenko and his wife Larisa (collectively Vasilenko) sued GFC and others for, among other things, negligence and loss of consortium, alleging that GFC acted negligently in locating its overflow parking lot in a place that required invitees like him to cross a busy street where they might be hit by a car and by failing to protect him from that risk. The trial court granted GFC’s motion for summary judgment on the ground that GFC owed no duty to Vasilenko because it did not own, possess, or control the public street where Vasilenko was injured. Vasilenko appealed, contending that the location of his injury was not dispositive, and that GFC failed to satisfy its burden of negating the general duty of ordinary care set forth in Civil Code section 1714.2 The Court of Appeal concluded that the location of the overflow lot, which required GFC’s invitees who parked there to cross a busy thoroughfare in an area that lacked a marked crosswalk or traffic signal in order to reach the church, exposed those invitees to an unreasonable risk of injury offsite, thus giving rise to a duty on the part of GFC. Accordingly, the Court reversed the judgment.