Millea v. EricksonAnnotate this Case
Ten-month-old Kimimila Win Sunny Sarah Iron Cloud (Kimi) died while being cared for Jolyn Erickson. Kelly Laughlin was present when Kimi died from positional asphyxiation in her car seat. Prudence Millea, as special administrator for Kimi’s estate, brought a negligence action against Erickson and Laughlin for Kimi’s death. Default judgment was entered against Erickson, and the circuit court granted summary judgment for Lauglin, concluding that he had no legal duty to Kimi. Millea appealed, arguing (1) Laughlin interfered in Kimi’s care by instructing Erickson to place Kimi in her car seat and in the bedroom, and Laughlin had influence over Erickson such that she deferred to him in providing care for Kimi; and (2) therefore, Laughlin assumed a legal duty to provide reasonable care for Kimi. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Laughlin had no legal duty to care for Kimi.