Doe v. Forrest

Annotate this Case
Doe v. Forrest (2002-184); 176 Vt. 476; 853 A.2d 48

2004 VT 37

[Filed 07-May-2004]
[Motion for Reargument Denied 28-May-2004]

       NOTICE:  This opinion is subject to motions for reargument under
  V.R.A.P. 40 as well as formal revision before publication in the Vermont
  Reports.  Readers are requested to notify the Reporter of Decisions,
  Vermont Supreme Court, 109 State Street, Montpelier, Vermont 05609-0801 of
  any errors in order that corrections may be made before this opinion goes
  to press.


                                 2004 VT 37

                                No. 2002-184


  Jane Doe	                                 Supreme Court

                                                 On Appeal from
       v.	                                 Bennington Superior Court


  Gary Forrest, Richard Forrest,	         March Term, 2003
  Bennington County Sheriff's Department,
  County of Bennington and State of Vermont

  Richard W. Norton, J.

  David Putter, Montpelier, and Bradley Myerson, Manchester Center, for
    Plaintiff-Appellant. 

  Pietro J. Lynn and Heather E. Thomas of Lynn & Associates, P.C.,
    Burlington, for Defendants-Appellees.


  PRESENT:  Amestoy, C.J., Dooley, Johnson and Skoglund, JJ., and 
            Gibson, J. (Ret.), Specially Assigned

        
       ¶  1.  DOOLEY, J.   This case requires the Court to determine
  whether a sheriff can be held liable as the employer of a deputy who
  perpetrates intentional criminal misconduct while on duty. 
  Plaintiff-victim was coerced into performing oral sex by then-Bennington
  County Deputy Sheriff Richard Forrest (Forrest).  Forrest voluntarily pled
  nolo contendere to charges of lewd and lascivious behavior in violation of
  13 V.S.A. § 2601 and neglect of duty in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 3006. 
  Plaintiff subsequently filed a civil action against Forrest's employers,
  Bennington County Sheriff Gary Forrest (Sheriff Forrest) and Bennington
  County Sheriff's Department (collectively the defendants), (FN1) asserting
  several claims of vicarious liability for the injuries she suffered as a
  result of Forrest's criminal conduct.  Forrest was initially a named
  defendant, but plaintiff voluntarily dismissed him from the case because of
  his lack of assets.  The Bennington Superior Court granted defendants'
  motion for summary judgment and dismissed plaintiff's claims.  Plaintiff
  now appeals to this Court, alleging that the court improperly granted
  summary judgment for defendants on several theories of direct and vicarious
  liability.  We hold that, on the record evidence, the trial court correctly
  ruled that defendants are not directly liable for Forrest's misconduct
  under 24 V.S.A. § 309, and that summary judgment for defendants was proper
  on two of plaintiff's theories of vicarious liability.  We also hold that
  there is sufficient evidence to withstand the summary judgment motion on
  plaintiff's theory of vicarious liability under Restatement of Agency
  (Second) § 219(2)(d) (1958), and reverse and remand.
   
       ¶  2.  On December 21, 1997, plaintiff, then twenty years old, was
  working alone as a cashier at a convenience store in East Dorset, Vermont. 
  Forrest, who was on duty and wearing his department-issued uniform, badge,
  gun, and handcuffs, entered the convenience store between 8:00 p.m. and
  9:00 p.m.  This was Forrest's third visit to the store since 6:30 p.m. that
  evening.  Although this particular stop was not prompted by a specific
  request, Forrest routinely checked the store during his East Dorset patrol
  as part of his "community policing function," pursuant to a contract
  between the Bennington County Sheriff's Department and the Town of East
  Dorset.  As such, he had become familiar with several of the store's
  employees and developed something of a personal relationship with
  plaintiff.  During some of these routine checks, Forrest jokingly
  threatened to handcuff or ticket plaintiff.  He also bragged about his
  exploits as a police officer and that he was trained to "shoot to kill." 
  In the weeks preceding December 21, his routine checks at the store
  increased in frequency and duration, as he apparently became more
  personally interested in plaintiff.

       ¶  3.  When Forrest entered the store, plaintiff was on the telephone
  with her mother while attending to customers at the check-out counter. 
  After those customers left the store, he took the telephone from plaintiff
  and jokingly told her mother, who was also an employee of the store, to
  stop harassing plaintiff.  Forrest then hung up the telephone and began
  asking plaintiff questions that were sexual in nature.  He turned the
  store's thermostat to ninety degrees and informed her that he had done so. 
  As she was readjusting the thermostat, he took hold of her hair, which was
  in a ponytail, and used it to move her head in various directions.  He told
  her that he liked women who wore their hair in a ponytail so that he could
  control them.  He then put his arm around plaintiff, who said nothing, but
  moved away from him and returned to the check-out counter. 

       ¶  4.  Forrest then selected an adult magazine from the store's
  magazine rack and showed plaintiff a picture of a woman performing
  fellatio.  After a short conversation pertaining to the sexual act depicted
  in the magazine, he began to maneuver her into a secluded area of the
  store, where he coerced her to perform oral sex.  He also kissed and
  fondled her breasts.  After approximately fifteen minutes, she moved away
  from Forrest, who departed soon thereafter.  She then telephoned for help.
  Forrest did not during the sexual assault unholster his weapon or
  handcuffs, nor did he threaten to use either instrument on plaintiff.  
   
       ¶  5.  As a result of the incident, Forrest resigned from the
  Sheriff's Department.  Following an investigation by the Vermont State
  Police, he was charged with, and voluntarily pled nolo contendere to, a
  criminal charge of lewd and lascivious behavior for exposing and "causing
  his penis to contact the mouth of [plaintiff] in violation of 13 V.S.A. §
  2601."  He also pled nolo contendere to a charge of neglect of duty for
  engaging in "open and gross lewd and lascivious conduct with [plaintiff]
  while assigned to patrol duty in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 3006."  He was
  sentenced to three-to-five-years' imprisonment, all suspended, and was
  placed on probation and ordered to have no contact with plaintiff or her
  family.
        
       ¶  6.  Plaintiff filed suit against defendants, alleging various state
  and federal claims and seeking monetary damages for injuries she suffered
  as a result of Forrest's conduct.  After plaintiff voluntarily dismissed
  all federal claims, defendants moved to dismiss her state law claims,
  arguing that an employee's intentional sexual misconduct could not be
  imputed to an employer because such conduct is beyond the scope of
  employment.  Finding further discovery warranted, the trial court denied
  defendants' motion to dismiss.  

       ¶  7.  After approximately two years of discovery, defendants moved
  for summary judgment, reasserting their argument that Forrest's misconduct
  was not within the scope of his employment; that no theory of vicarious
  liability recognized in Vermont would impute Forrest's conduct to
  defendants; and that there was no evidence to indicate that Sheriff Forrest
  had negligently trained Deputy Forrest, or that Sheriff Forrest knew or
  should have known that Deputy Forrest had a propensity to assault women. 
   
       ¶  8.  Following a hearing, the court granted defendants' motion. 
  The court found that 24 V.S.A. § 309, which plaintiff asserted was a basis
  for liability, was not applicable; that based on the undisputed material
  facts defendants were not vicariously liable under the doctrine of
  respondeat superior or alternative theories of liability under the
  Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2)(d); and that there was no evidence
  indicating defendants had negligently supervised Forrest.  The court then
  entered judgment in favor of defendants.   This appeal followed.  

       ¶  9.  Our review of summary judgment is de novo, and in proceeding
  with that review, this Court applies the same standard as the trial court. 
  Springfield Terminal Ry. v. Agency of Transp., 174 Vt. 341, 344, 816 A.2d 448, 452 (2002).  We will affirm summary judgment when "the pleadings,
  depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together
  with the affidavits, if any, . . . show that there is no genuine issue as
  to any material fact and that any party is entitled to a judgment as a
  matter of law."  V.R.C.P. 56(c)(3); King v. Gorczyk, 2003 VT 34, ¶7, 825 A.2d 16.  In applying this standard, we give the nonmoving party the
  benefit of all reasonable doubts and inferences.  King, 2003 VT 34, at ¶7. 
  Summary judgment is required when, after adequate time for discovery, a
  party fails to make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an
  element essential to her case upon which she has the burden of proof. 
  Poplaski v. Lamphere, 152 Vt. 251, 254-55, 565 A.2d 1326, 1329 (1989). 
  Plaintiff asserts several arguments on appeal in support of her contention
  that the trial court erred in granting defendants' motion for summary
  judgment.  Plaintiff argues that: (1) defendants are directly liable for
  Forrest's misconduct pursuant to 24 V.S.A. § 309 because Forrest neglected
  his duty when he failed to arrest himself for his own sexual misconduct;
  (2) Forrest's intentional criminal act was within the scope of his
  employment, even though that conduct was contrary to the wishes and/or
  instructions of defendants; and (3) defendants are vicariously liable under
  the Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2)(d) even if Forrest's acts were
  outside the scope of his employment.  We address each of plaintiff's
  arguments in turn.
   
                 I.  Direct Liability Under 24 V.S.A. § 309

       ¶  10.  Plaintiff alleges that Sheriff Forrest is directly liable for
  Deputy Forrest's misconduct under 24 V.S.A. § 309, and that the trial court
  failed to accord proper weight to Forrest's neglect-of-duty conviction when
  assessing defendants' liability under § 309.  Section 309 provides that:

      A sheriff shall be liable for the official acts and neglects
    of his deputies, and may take bonds of indemnity from them.  Such
    deputies may, and when required, shall perform any official duty
    which may be required of the sheriff.  Returns of their acts and
    doings shall be signed by them as deputy sheriffs, and their
    official acts shall be deemed to be the acts of the sheriff.  


  (emphasis added).  Traditionally, § 309 and the statutes upon which the
  current version is based have been applied to hold sheriffs liable for
  their deputies' negligent or malfeasant execution of writs.  See Lyman v.
  Holmes, 88 Vt. 431, 432, 92 A. 829, 830 (1915) (sheriff liable for deputy's
  malfeasant seizure of property on writ against another party); Cowdery v.
  Smith, 50 Vt. 235, 235 (1877) (plaintiff sued sheriff to recover for
  deputy's negligent failure to levy writ of execution); Buck v. Ashley, 37
  Vt. 475, 477 (1865) (sheriff may be liable for deputy's negligent
  maintenance of attached property); Flanagan v. Hoyt, 36 Vt. 565, 571-72
  (1864) (sheriff not liable for deputy's sale of attached property done in
  accordance with law and without sheriff's knowledge or consent); Kimball v.
  Perry, 15 Vt. 414, 421 (1843) (sheriff not liable for deputy's sale of
  attached goods following direction by creditors' attorney because conduct
  not official); Wetherby v. Foster, 5 Vt. 136, 138 (1832) (sheriff liable
  for neglect of deputy to levy an execution upon personal property). 
   
       ¶  11.  Apparently, plaintiff concedes that Forrest's actions cannot
  be considered "official acts" as those words are used in the statute. 
  Instead, plaintiff argues that Forrest's actions represent a neglect of
  duty because he failed to intervene to prevent his own crime.  In support
  of this argument, plaintiff points particularly to the fact that Forrest
  was convicted of neglect of duty in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 3006.  

       ¶  12.  Because Forrest's duties cannot be construed to include
  committing a sexual assault, we cannot conclude that the misconduct
  involved in this litigation supports plaintiff's novel theory.  If, for
  example, the damages sought resulted from the robbing of another store
  while Forrest was engaged in sexual misconduct and not performing his
  duties, plaintiff's theory would better fit the statutory language. 
   
       ¶  13.  While Forrest's failure to prevent his own criminal acts may
  in some sense constitute  "neglect" because a sheriff has the statutory
  duty to "suppress . . . unlawful disorder," 24 V.S.A. § 299, we do not
  believe that, reasonably construed, § 309 applies in these circumstances. 
  See Springfield Terminal Ry., 174 Vt. at 346-47, 816 A.2d  at 453; In re
  G.T., 170 Vt. 507, 517, 758 A.2d 301, 308 (2000) (Court will always avoid a
  statutory construction leading to absurd or irrational results). 
  Plaintiff's interpretation would effectively render sheriffs strictly
  liable under the statute for all criminal misconduct of their on-duty
  deputies, except in the wholly implausible and unlikely event that the
  malfeasant deputy prevented his or her own criminal undertaking.  So
  construed, § 309 would impose a legal duty upon sheriffs to control all
  volitional criminal acts of their on-duty deputies despite having
  "absolutely no reasonably foreseeable notice [of those acts]."  Smith v.
  Day, 148 Vt. 595, 598, 538 A.2d 157, 159 (1987) (refusing to impose duty on
  military university to control volitional criminal acts of its students,
  despite having a "large degree of control over the activities of its
  students," because criminal acts not foreseeable).  As this Court
  recognized in the early case of Flanagan v. Hoyt, 36 Vt. at 571
  (interpreting statutory predecessor to 24 V.S.A. § 309),  an expansive
  reading of § 309 may "compel sheriffs to have no deputies," or cause them
  to deny important services to the community, such as the community policing
  function that Forrest was providing before engaging in sexual acts with
  plaintiff.    

       ¶  14.  Given our construction of § 309, we reject plaintiff's
  assertion that the trial court did not accord proper weight to Forrest's
  conviction for neglect of duty under 13 V.S.A. § 3006.  The charge was that
  Forrest neglected his duty by engaging in "lewd and lascivious conduct with
  [plaintiff] while assigned to patrol duty."  Thus, his neglect of duty was
  his failure to perform his assigned patrol.  Forrest's failure to perform
  his assigned patrol is not the cause of plaintiff's damages.  The
  conviction adds nothing to plaintiff's case. 

       II.  Vicarious Liability for Conduct Within the Scope of Employment

       ¶  15.  Plaintiff next contends the trial court erred in rejecting her
  claim that defendants are vicariously liable for Forrest's misconduct
  because that conduct fell within the scope of his employment.  "Under the
  settled doctrine of respondeat superior, an employer or master is held
  vicariously liable for the tortious acts of an employee or servant
  committed during, or incidental to, the scope of employment."  Brueckner v.
  Norwich Univ., 169 Vt. 118, 122-23, 730 A.2d 1086, 1090 (1999).  We have
  adopted the elements of scope of employment set out in Restatement (Second)
  of Agency § 229(1).   See id. at 123, 730 A.2d  at 1091.  To establish that
  a servant's conduct falls within the scope of his or her employment, a
  plaintiff must demonstrate that the conduct: 

    (a) . . . is of the kind the servant is employed to perform; 
    (b) . . . occurs substantially within the authorized time and space
    limits; (c) . . . is actuated, at least in part, by a purpose to
    serve the master; and (d) in a case in which force is
    intentionally used by the servant against another . . . is not
    unexpectable by the master.  

  Id.; Sweet v. Roy, 173 Vt. 418, 430-31, 801 A.2d 694, 703-04 (2002).  The
  conduct of an employee falls outside the scope of employment if it is
  "different in kind from that authorized, far beyond the authorized time or
  space limits, or too little actuated by a purpose to serve the master." 
  Restatement (Second) of Agency § 228(2);  Sweet, 173 Vt. at 431, 801 A.2d 
  at 704.  

       ¶  16.  Plaintiff asserts that Forrest's sexual misconduct satisfies
  all four prongs of the scope-of-employment test adopted by this Court.  We
  need look no further than the third prong to disagree.  See Sweet, 173 Vt.
  at 431-32, 801 A.2d  at 704 (inquiry looks to " 'whether the acts can
  properly be seen as intending to advance the employer's interests' ")
  (quoting McHugh v. Univ. of Vt., 758 F. Supp. 945, 951 (D. Vt. 1991),
  aff'd, 966 F.2d 67 (2d Cir. 1992)).  Although Forrest's misconduct occurred
  while ostensibly on duty,  we cannot conclude that coercing plaintiff to
  perform fellatio was conduct that was actuated, even in part, by a purpose
  to serve the county sheriff.  The act Forrest performed is so different
  from the acts he was authorized to perform that we can reach this
  conclusion as a matter of law.  See Restatement (Second) of Agency § 228,
  cmt. d.   

       ¶  17.  For purposes of our analysis, we assume, as plaintiff argues,
  that Forrest entered the convenience store to carry out a community
  policing function.  The event, however, forming the basis of this suit was
  undeniably detached from and unrelated to that role.  While Forrest may
  have initially gone to the store to serve the purpose of his employer, his
  ensuing sexual misconduct cannot be found to further the goals of law
  enforcement.  Indeed, Forrest victimized a person he was there to protect,
  exactly contrary to the interests of his employer.
   
       ¶  18.  This case is unlike those where a law enforcement official is
  overly aggressive in attempting to obtain information from a suspect or in
  performing the arrest of a suspect.  In such a situation, the tortious
  conduct partially implements law enforcement goals, however
  inappropriately.  See Brueckner, 169 Vt. at 123, 730 A.2d  at 1091
  (university could be liable for tortious hazing conduct of university cadre
  members who "were acting in furtherance of their general duties to
  indoctrinate and orient" first-year students).  Here, Forrest's criminal
  misconduct - an act rooted in prurient self-interest - cannot properly be
  seen as intending to advance the employer's interests. (FN2)  The superior
  court properly granted summary judgment to defendants on the ground that
  Forrest was not acting within the scope of his employment when he sexually
  assaulted plaintiff.


       ¶  19.  Because we decide that plaintiff does not meet the third prong
  of the scope of employment test, we need not consider plaintiff's argument
  that the sexual misconduct was not unexpectable, but instead was
  foreseeable.  

  III. Vicarious Liability Under the Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2)(d)


       ¶  20.  Finally, plaintiff claims that, although Forrest's sexual
  misconduct was outside the scope of his employment, defendants are
  vicariously liable for that tortious conduct, relying on the principles set
  forth in the Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2)(d).  In its entirety,
  § 219 reads:

    When Master is Liable for Torts of His Servants

    (1) A master is subject to liability for the torts of his servants
    committed while acting in the scope of their employment.
    (2) A master is not subject to liability for the torts of his
    servants acting outside the scope of their employment, unless: 
    (a) the master intended the conduct or the consequences, or (b)
    the master was negligent or reckless, or 
    (c) the conduct violated a non-delegable duty of the master, or 
    (d) the servant purported to act or to speak on behalf of the
    principal and there was reliance upon apparent authority, or he
    was aided in accomplishing the tort by the existence of the agency
    relation.
    
  (emphasis added).  Plaintiff actually asserts two different theories of
  liability relying upon the disjunctive language in § 219(2)(d).  The first
  clause establishes an employer's vicarious liability for the torts of
  employees based on the doctrine of "apparent authority," while the second
  creates liability for an employer whose agent "was aided in accomplishing
  the tort by the existence of the agency relation."  Id.  Plaintiff argues
  that defendants are vicariously liable under both theories.  
   
       ¶  21.  This Court has not explicitly adopted § 219(2)(d) as an
  exception to our scope-of-employment rule, although we have recognized the
  provision as relevant in the context of workplace sexual harassment.  See
  Allen v. Dep't of Employment & Training, 159 Vt. 286, 291, 618 A.2d 1317,
  1320 (1992) (noting that standards courts have applied to impute knowledge
  of workplace sexual harassment to employers is in general accord with §
  219(2)(d)).  We have routinely adopted provisions of the Restatement
  (Second) of Agency as reflecting the common law of Vermont.  See Sweet, 173
  Vt. at 432-33, 801 A.2d at 704-05; Brueckner, 169 Vt. at 123, 730 A.2d  at
  1091.  This section has been relied upon by the United States Supreme Court
  as a general statement of agency principles.  See Faragher v. City of Boca
  Raton, 524 U.S. 775, 801-02 (1998);  Burlington Indus., Inc. v. Ellerth,
  524 U.S. 742, 758 (1998).  Certainly, the opening subsection, § 219(1),
  which states the general proposition that a master is liable for the torts
  of his or her servants committed while in the scope of their employment, is
  in accord with our current view of respondeat superior.  See Breslauer v.
  Fayston Sch. Dist., 163 Vt. 416, 424, 659 A.2d 1129, 1134 (1995) (citing §
  219 for the proposition that a plaintiff must show master-servant
  relationship to hold master vicariously liable for torts of his servant). 
  We have also consistently recognized the doctrine of apparent authority,
  primarily in the context of an agent's authority to enter into a
  contractual relationship on behalf of the principal.  See Lakeside Equip.
  Corp. v. Town of Chester, 173 Vt. 317, 324-25, 795 A.2d 1174, 1180-81
  (2002) (apparent authority of agent sufficient to establish personal
  jurisdiction over the principal); New England Educ. Training Serv., Inc. v.
  Silver Street P'ship, 148 Vt. 99, 105, 528 A.2d 1117, 1120-21 (1987)
  (apparent authority recognized but not applicable because no grounds for
  reliance); Blitz v. Breen, 132 Vt. 455, 458-59, 321 A.2d 48, 50-51 (1974)
  (apparent authority recognized but not applicable because real estate agent
  did not act with principal's apparent authority to purchase land on behalf
  of plaintiff); Star Rest. v. Metro. Life Ins. Co., 105 Vt. 77, 82, 163 A. 558, 559 (1933) (stating general rule that "the tort of an agent is within
  the course of his employment when . . . he is endeavoring to promote the
  principal's business within the scope of actual or apparent the authority")
  (emphasis in original omitted). 

       ¶  22.  Thus, consistent with our previous references to § 219(2)(d),
  we expressly adopt this provision of the Restatement as applicable in
  assessing whether an employer has vicarious liability for the tortious
  conduct of an employee when that conduct falls outside the scope of his or
  her employment.  As a result, we analyze both of plaintiff's arguments
  under this section.

                           A.  Apparent Authority
   
       ¶  23.  Plaintiff argues that, pursuant to the first clause of §
  219(2)(d), defendants are vicariously liable for Forrest's sexual
  misconduct under the doctrine of  "apparent authority" because the
  instruments of police power provided to Forrest, such as a gun, badge, and
  uniform, can "reasonably create an impression that the employer authorized
  the deputy to coerce sex."  "As a general rule, apparent authority is
  relevant where the agent purports to exercise a power which he or she does
  not have, as distinct from where the agent threatens to misuse actual
  power."  Burlington Indus., 524 U.S.  at 759.  "Apparent authority 'derives
  from conduct of the principal, communicated or manifested to the third
  party, which reasonably leads the third party to rely on the agent's
  authority.' "  Lakeside Equip. Corp., 173 Vt. at 325, 795 A.2d  at 1181
  (quoting New England Educ. Training Serv., 148 Vt. at 105, 528 A.2d at
  1120).  Liability under the doctrine "exists only to the extent that it is
  reasonable for the third person dealing with the agent to believe that the
  agent is authorized."  Restatement (Second) of Agency § 8 cmt. c; see
  Ellerth, 524 U.S.  at 759.  The existence of apparent authority "depends
  upon a factual showing that the third party relied upon the
  misrepresentation of the agent because of some misleading conduct on the
  part of the principal - not the agent."  Hallock v. State, 474 N.E.2d 1178,
  1181  (N.Y. 1984).

       ¶  24.  Based on the summary judgment record, there is no evidence of
  conduct by Sheriff Forrest or the Bennington County Sheriff's Department
  communicating or manifesting Forrest's authority to engage in sexual
  misconduct while on duty.  See Lakeside Equip. Corp., 173 Vt. at 325, 795 A.2d  at 1181 (no evidence on summary judgment record demonstrating that
  principal signaled to plaintiff that agent had authority to enter into
  contract).  Defendants provided Forrest with the ordinary trappings of
  police power - a gun, badge and uniform.  To hold that these items created
  apparent authority in this case would necessarily mean that all law
  enforcement officers have the apparent authority to engage in sexual
  misconduct.  We cannot conclude that it would be reasonable for plaintiff
  to infer such authority from the visible manifestations of Forrest's power
  as a law enforcement officer or his threats, if any, to use his power on
  plaintiff.  See New England Educ. Training Serv., 148 Vt. at 105, 528 A.2d 
  at 1120-21 ("[T]here is absolutely no evidence in the record of conduct on
  the part of the principal . . . which could reasonably have been relied on
  by plaintiff as a manifestation of the authority of its agent."). 
  Accordingly, we conclude that summary judgment in favor of defendants on
  the claim of apparent authority was appropriate. 
                            
                     B.  Aided in Accomplishing the Tort

       ¶  25.  Finally, plaintiff argues that summary judgment was
  inappropriate because a question of material fact remains as to whether
  defendants should be held vicariously liable under the last clause of §
  219(2)(d), which authorizes liability for torts committed outside the scope
  of the servant's employment if the servant "was aided in accomplishing the
  tort by the existence of the agency relation."  Plaintiff argues that the
  agency relationship aided the commission of the tort in two ways: (1) by
  giving Forrest unique access to and authority over plaintiff to commit the
  tort; and (2) by giving Forrest the instruments, particularly the uniform
  and firearm, to prevent resistance.  Because we conclude there are
  questions of material fact regarding this issue, we reverse the trial
  court's grant of summary judgment on this issue.  

       ¶  26.  At the outset, we must acknowledge that plaintiff's theories,
  assuming the facts support them, appear to fit squarely within the plain
  language of the last clause of § 219(2)(d).  Plaintiff alleges that Forrest
  could not have committed the sexual assault on plaintiff except by virtue
  of the deputy sheriff position conferred on him by defendants.  In the
  wording of the section, plaintiff's theory is that Forrest's appointment
  and his official powers and responsibilities "aided in accomplishing the
  tort" on plaintiff.

       ¶  27.  As is more fully developed below, however, we are convinced
  that we must look further than the plain language of the clause.  Indeed,
  as is apparent from a reading of this decision, the trial court opinion and
  the dissent, we must first choose among conflicting interpretations of the
  Restatement language before we can apply § 219(2)(d) to the facts of this
  case.  In making this choice, we are guided by three important points.
   
       ¶  28.  First, although only a limited number of decisions from other
  courts have relied upon the last clause of § 219(2)(d) in reaching a
  comparable decision, the language has been comprehensively and persuasively
  construed in recent decisions of the United States Supreme Court,
  Burlington Indus., Inc. v. Ellerth, 524 U.S. 742 (1998), and Faragher v.
  City of Boca Raton, 524 U.S. 775 (1998).  Both are sexual harassment cases
  brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and in which the central
  issue was employer liability for acts of a supervisor of the plaintiff
  employee.  Both sought to implement the earlier holding of the United
  States Supreme Court in Meritor Sav. Bank, FSB v. Vinson, 477 U.S. 57, 72
  (1986), that "Congress's intent [was] that courts look to traditional
  principles of the law of agency in devising standards of employer liability
  in those instances where liability for the actions of a supervisory
  employee was not otherwise obvious."  Faragher, 524 U.S.  at 791-92.  In
  looking at the traditional principles of the law of agency, the Court
  looked particularly at § 219(2)(d) of the Restatement and its last phrase.

       ¶  29.  In Faragher, the issue was whether an employer could be liable
  "for the acts of a supervisory employee whose sexual harassment of
  subordinates has created a hostile work environment amounting to employment
  discrimination."  Faragher, 524 U.S.  at 780.  The Court concluded that
  liability could not be found under the rubric that the supervisor was
  acting within the scope of his employment, id. at 798-801, and turned to
  the "aided in accomplishing the tort" language of § 219(2)(d).  The Court
  rejected a narrow reading of the language:
   
    The City, however, contends that § 219(2)(d) has no application
    here.  It argues that the second qualification of the subsection,
    referring to a servant "aided in accomplishing the tort by the
    existence of the agency relation," merely "refines" the one
    preceding it, which holds the employer vicariously liable for its
    servant's abuse of apparent authority. . . . But this narrow
    reading is untenable; it would render the second qualification of
    § 219(2)(d) almost entirely superfluous (and would seem to ask us
    to shut our eyes to the potential effects of supervisory
    authority, even when not explicitly invoked).  The illustrations
    accompanying this subsection make clear that it covers not only
    cases involving abuse of apparent authority, but also cases in
    which tortious conduct is made possible or facilitated by the
    existence of the actual agency relationship. . . . 

    We therefore agree with [plaintiff] that in implementing Title VII
    it makes sense to hold an employer vicariously liable for some
    tortious conduct of a supervisor made possible by abuse of his
    supervisory authority, and that the aided-by-agency-relation
    principle embodied in § 219(2)(d) of the Restatement provides an
    appropriate starting point for determining liability for the kind
    of harassment presented here.

  Id. at 801-02.  In describing further the application of § 219(2)(d), the
  Court noted that the supervisor-employee relationship provides access, and
  the power of the supervisor is such that the employee who is faced with
  harassment by the supervisor is not in a position to defend, as is normally
  true with a coworker.  Id. at 803.  Finally, the Court stated that
  recognition of liability for a supervisor's actions places the burden on
  the party that can guard against misconduct through screening, training and
  monitoring.  Id.
   
       ¶  30.  Ellerth is a companion case, decided on the same day as
  Faragher, and addressing whether an employer has vicarious liability under
  Title VII when a supervisor creates a hostile work environment by threats
  to a subordinate of adverse employment actions, based on sex, but does not
  fulfill the threat.  524 U.S.  at 754.  Again, the Court turned to general
  agency principles and  rejected the argument that the supervisor was acting
  within the scope of his employment.  Again, it looked to the last phrase of
  § 219(2)(d) of the Restatement.  Recognizing that in the broadest sense the
  tort is aided by the supervisor-employee relationship, the Court rejected a
  reading that broad, holding that the employer's creation of the employment
  relationship alone is insufficient to meet the test of aiding in
  accomplishing the tort by the agency relationship as required by §
  219(2)(d).  524 U.S.  at 760.  The Court held, however, that investing a
  supervisor with the power to take adverse employment action was sufficient
  to meet the section's test if the supervisor takes a tangible employment
  action against the employee as part of sexual harassment.  Id. at 761
  (liability in such circumstances "reflects a correct application of the
  aided in the agency relationship"); id. at 762 ("Tangible employment
  actions are the means by which the supervisor brings the official power of
  the enterprise to bear on subordinates."); id. at 762-63 ("Whatever the
  exact contours of the aided in the agency relation standard, its
  requirements will always be met when a supervisor takes a tangible
  employment action against a subordinate.").  In situations where the
  supervisor engages in sexual harassment conduct but takes no employment
  action, the Court found the application of the standard "less obvious" and
  discussed how the language could be interpreted either way.  Id. at 763. 
  Ultimately, the Court declined to "render a definitive explanation of our
  understanding of the standard" because other considerations controlled its
  interpretation of Title VII.  Id.


       ¶  31.  We are, of course, not strictly bound by an interpretation of
  the Restatement of Agency by the United States Supreme Court, where we are
  not applying Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.  We find, however, that
  Faragher and Ellerth are strong persuasive authority and are particularly
  helpful to our application of § 219(2)(d).  Thus, we follow these
  decisions. (FN3) 
   
       ¶  32.  Our second introductory point follows from the United States
  Supreme Court decisions.  It is important not to adopt too narrow an
  interpretation of the last clause of § 219(2)(d), but it is equally
  important not to adopt too broad an interpretation.  We are sensitive to
  the concern expressed by the trial court that plaintiff's arguments could
  lead to a rule that makes a principal liable for all intentional torts of
  an agent in all circumstances.  Just as the Supreme Court decided that §
  219(2)(d) could not be read to make employers liable for all acts of sexual
  harassment of supervisors against employees, we must similarly narrow any
  rule we decide upon.
   
       ¶  33.  Our third introductory point deals with the context of this
  case.  The Court in Faragher was very careful to analyze the policy
  judgments behind § 219(2)(d) and apply it to implement those policies.  We
  similarly examine some of those policy issues in the context of an
  intentional sexual tort of a law enforcement officer perpetrated on a
  community citizen the officer was charged to protect as part of his
  community policing function.  The Faragher Court emphasized three main
  considerations in applying § 219(2)(d) in the supervisor-employee
  relationship: the opportunity for contact created by the relationship; the
  powerlessness of the employee to resist the supervisor and prevent the
  unwanted contact; and the opportunity to prevent and guard against the
  conduct.  524 U.S.  at 803.


       ¶  34.  What makes the circumstances of this case virtually unique
  from a policy perspective is the extraordinary power that a law enforcement
  officer has over a citizen.  A number of courts have talked about this
  power in finding vicarious liability in cases involving sexual assaults by
  police officers.  See, e.g., Applewhite v. City of Baton Rouge, 380 So. 2d 119, 121 (La. Ct. App. 1979), and Mary M. v. City of Los Angeles, 814 P.2d 1341, 1349-52 (Cal. 1991) (en banc). 

       ¶  35.  Mary M. is explicitly policy-based and contains this rationale
  as part of the holding:

      At the outset, we observed that society has granted police
    officers extraordinary power and authority over its citizenry.  An
    officer who detains an individual is acting as the official
    representative of the state, with all of its coercive power.  As
    visible symbols of that power, an officer is given a distinctively
    marked car, a uniform, a badge, and a gun.  As one court
    commented, "police officers [exercise] the most awesome and
    dangerous power that a democratic state possesses with respect to
    its residents - the power to use lawful force to arrest and detain
    them."  Policeman's Benev. Ass'n of N.J. v. Washington Tp., 850 F.2d 133, 141 (3d Cir. 1988).  Inherent in this formidable power
    is the potential for abuse.  The cost resulting from misuse of
    that power should be borne by the community, because of the
    substantial benefits that the community derives from the lawful
    exercise of police power.

  Mary M., 814 P.2d  at 1349.  Applewhite has a similar rationale, although
  related to the traditional rationale of apparent authority:

      We particularly note that Officer Crowe was on duty in uniform and
    armed, and was operating a police unit at the time of this
    incident.  He was able to separate the plaintiff from her
    companions because of the force and authority of the position
    which he held.  He took her into police custody and then committed
    the sexual abuse upon her in the vehicle provided for his use by
    his employer.

      A police officer is a public servant given considerable public
    trust and authority.  Our review of the jurisprudence indicates
    that, almost uniformly, where excesses are committed by such
    officers, their employers are held to be responsible for their
    actions even though those actions may be somewhat removed from
    their usual duties.  This is unquestionably the case because of
    the position of such officers in our society.

  Applewhite, 380 So. 2d  at 121.

       ¶  36.  This power is especially pronounced when the tort is committed
  on a citizen the law enforcement officer is charged with protecting.  The
  Faragher Court noted the particular power of an employment supervisor who
  could inflict adverse employment actions on a resistant employee.  Not only
  is the supervisor placed in the position to sexually harass the employee,
  but the fear of retaliation prevents the employee from resisting or
  complaining.  See 524 U.S.  at 803.  In like manner, when the law
  enforcement officer is the wrongdoer, the citizen is also stripped of the
  official protection that society provides.  The citizen is particularly
  vulnerable and defenseless.
   
       ¶  37.  The Faragher Court also emphasized the unique access to
  commit the tort the employment relationship can provide.  In a very similar
  way, a law enforcement officer has unique access to a citizen who is
  depending upon the law enforcement officer for protection.  We are struck
  by how modern law enforcement philosophies increase the significance of
  this factor.  We live now in the era of community policing.  As a result,
  the emphasis of police work is more on prevention and interaction with
  community members to create conditions that inhibit crime.  See D. Stevens,
  Community Policing and Police Leadership in Policing and Community
  Partnerships 163, 165 (D. Stevens ed., Prentice Hall 2001) (community
  policing involves "a preventative response to public order through a level
  of delegation of authority with community members and line officers as a
  response to future crimes as opposed to a response after crimes have
  occurred"); W. Skogan & S. Hartnett, Community Policing Chicago Style 5-9
  (Oxford Univ. Press 1997) (defines community policing and explains that
  police are "reorganizing to provide opportunities for citizens to come into
  contact with them under circumstances that encourage an information
  exchange, the development of mutual trust, and an opportunity for joint or
  coordinated activities"); S. Waldeck, Cops, Community Policing, and the
  Social Norms Approach to Crime Control: Should One Make Us More Comfortable
  with the Others?, 34 Ga. L. Rev. 1253, 1254 (2000) (defining community
  policing).  This role requires community members to place confidence and
  trust in law enforcement officers as partners in preventing crime, as
  "Officer Friendly."  Thus, the interaction between Forrest and plaintiff in
  this case occurred because Forrest was acting as plaintiff's protector and
  his visible presence would discourage those who might want to rob the
  convenience store.

       ¶  38.  Other courts have noted the effect of the unique access of a
  law enforcement officer on vicarious liability. For example, Seventh
  Circuit Court of Appeals noted in a case where an officer sexually molested
  a thirteen-year-old girl he routinely drove home so she would not be out
  after curfew:

    [W]hen the employee is a male police officer whose employer has
    invested him with intimidating authority to deal in private with
    troubled teenage girls, his taking advantage of the opportunity
    that authority and proximity and privacy give him to extract
    sexual favors from these girls should be sufficiently within the
    orbit of his employer-conferred powers to bring the doctrine of
    respondeat superior into play, even though he is not acting to
    further the employer's goals but instead is on a frolic of his
    own. 

  West v. Waymire, 114 F.3d 646, 649 (7th Cir. 1997) (internal citations
  omitted); see also Red Elk v. United States, 62 F.3d 1102, 1107 (8th Cir.
  1995) (in case where officer picked up young woman for violating curfew,
  court held "it was also foreseeable that a male officer with authority to
  pick up a teenage girl out alone at night in violation of the curfew might
  be tempted to violate his trust.   Claymore had that opportunity because of
  his employment, the trappings of his office, and the curfew policy he was
  to enforce."). 

       ¶  39.  Finally, Faragher relied on the greater opportunity that
  employers had to "guard against misconduct by supervisors . . . ; employers
  have greater opportunity and incentive to screen them, train them, and
  monitor their performance."  524 U.S.  at 803.  As the California Supreme
  Court noted in Mary M., 814 P.2d  at 1347, imposing liability on the
  employer may prevent recurrence of tortious conduct by creating an
  incentive for vigilance by those in a position to prevent it. (FN4)  No
  incentive to prevent this kind of conduct is created by leaving the victim
  uncompensated.  Nor do we think we create an adequate incentive by
  requiring a plaintiff to prove that the employer inadequately supervised
  the officer.  See West v. Waymire, 114 F.3d  at 649 ("We want the police
  department to supervise its officers in this domain with special care, and
  so we do not impose on the plaintiff the burden of establishing negligent
  supervision.").  We also note the observation of the court in Mary M. that
  the costs of police misconduct should be borne by the community because the
  community derives substantial benefits from the lawful exercise of police
  power.  814 P.2d  at 1349.
                                                                       
       ¶  40.  With these three points in mind, we turn to the alternative
  constructions of § 219(2)(d).  We start with the superior court's
  construction under which it held that the last clause does not apply to the
  facts of this case.  The superior court recognized that the language of the
  section appeared to fit, but concluded that a "plain reading" of the
  exception contained in the last clause would "eviscerate the general scope
  of employment rule" and looked for ways to narrow its application.  It
  settled on the limitations adopted in Gary v. Long, 59 F.3d 1391, 1397-98
  (D.C. Cir. 1995), a sexual harassment case brought under Title VII of the
  Civil Rights Act.  Gary adopted two limitations on the broad coverage of
  the exception.  First, drawing on examples in the official comment to §
  219(2)(d) as described in the concurring opinion in Barnes v. Costle, 561 F.2d 983, 996 (D.C. Cir. 1977) (MacKinnon, J., concurring), the court held
  that the exception makes the employer liable only if the tort was "
  'accomplished by an instrumentality, or through conduct associated with the
  agency status.' "  Gary, 59 F.3d  at 1397.   Second, it adopted a limitation
  from the comment to § 261, a section cited in the comment to § 219(2)(d). 
  Gary, 59 F.3d  at 1398.  The comment stated:

    Liability is based on the fact that the agent's position
    facilitates the consumption of the [tort], in that from the point
    of view of the third person the transaction seems regular on its
    face and the agent appears to be acting in the ordinary course of
    the business confided to him.

  Restatement (Second) Agency § 261, cmt. a.  The court added from a comment
  to § 166:

    If a person has information which would lead a reasonable man to
    believe that the agent is violating the orders of the principal or
    that the principal would not wish the agent to act under the
    circumstances known to the agent, he cannot subject the principal
    to liability.

  Id. § 166, cmt. a.  The superior court applied this second limitation in
  part to find that the exception in the last clause of § 219(2)(d) did not
  apply. 
   
       ¶  41.  We conclude that the holding in Gary did not survive the
  Supreme Court decisions in  Faragher and Ellerth.  We read Faragher as
  rejecting the second limitation imposed by Gary, that the transaction seems
  "regular" to a third party and the agent appears to be acting within the
  authority given by the principal.  This limitation is clearly a refinement
  of apparent authority analysis.  See Faragher, 524 U.S.  at 802 (§ 219(2)(d)
  "covers not only cases involving the abuse of apparent authority, but also
  cases in which tortious conduct is made possible or facilitated by the
  existence of the actual agency relationship"); see also Costos v. Coconut
  Island Corp., 137 F.3d 46, 49 (1st Cir. 1998) (argument that the last
  clause of  § 219(2)(d) is a branch of apparent authority is inconsistent
  with the plain meaning of the words, and renders it superfluous).  Since we
  have embraced the analysis in Faragher and Ellerth, we reject the holding
  of Gary and particularly its second limitation, as relied upon by the
  superior court. (FN5)
        
       ¶  42.  An alternative method of narrowing § 219(2)(d), such that
  plaintiff would not prevail, is presented by the recent decision of the
  Maine Supreme Judicial Court in Mahar v. StoneWood Transp., 2003 ME 63, 813 A.2d 540.  In Mahar, the Maine court apparently held that § 219(2)(d)
  applies only in cases of misrepresentation or deceit.  Id. at  ¶21.  In
  reaching this conclusion the court first relied upon the comment to §
  219(2)(d) which provides:

    Clause (d) includes primarily situations in which the principal's
    liability is based upon conduct which is within the apparent
    authority of a servant, as where one purports to speak for his
    employer in defaming another or interfering with another's
    business.  See §§ 247?249.  Apparent authority may also be the
    basis of an action of deceit (§§ 257?264), and even physical harm. 
    See §§ 265?267.  In other situations, the servant may be able to
    cause harm because of his position as an agent, as where a
    telegraph operator sends false messages purporting to come from
    third persons.  See § 261.  Again, the manager of a store operated
    by him for an undisclosed principal is enabled to cheat the
    customers because of his position.  See § 222.  The enumeration of
    such situations is not exhaustive, and is intended only to
    indicate the area within which a master may be subjected to
    liability for acts of his servants not in the scope of employment. 
   
  Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2)(d), cmt. e (emphasis added).  The
  court found in the comment a limit on the section's applicability to "cases
  within the apparent authority of the employee, or when the employee's
  conduct involves misrepresentation or deceit."  Mahar, 2003 ME 63, at ¶21. 
  Based on a law review article discussing the deliberations in the American
  Law Institute over § 219(2)(d), see Casenote, Costos v. Coconut Island
  Corp.: Creating a Vicarious Liability Catchall Under the
  Aided-by-Agency-Relation Theory, 73 U. Colo. L. Rev. 1099, 1105 (2002), the
  court concluded that the section was intended to apply in "cases involving
  apparent authority, reliance, or deceit."  Mahar, 2003 ME 63, at ¶21.  

       ¶  43.  The facts of Mahar involved only a weak claim that § 219(2)(d)
  provided vicarious liability.  The defendant was a trucking company that
  employed a driver who assaulted plaintiff automobile driver in a road rage
  incident in which the truck driver thought that plaintiff was driving
  behind him with his high beams on.  The court found that the truck driver
  engaged in no misrepresentation or deceit, and therefore § 219(2)(d) did
  not apply.  Id. at ¶24.
   
       ¶  44.  Although we do not disagree with the holding of Mahar on the
  facts before the court, we are not persuaded by its rationale.   The plain
  language of the section is directly against importing into it a requirement
  of misrepresentation or deceit.  Although one of the hypotheticals in the
  comment involves misrepresentation or deceit, the other does not, and the
  comment does not limit the reach of the section language in this respect. 
  Indeed, the comment specifically states that the "enumeration of such
  situations is not exhaustive."  Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2),
  cmt. e.  Finally, the most important use of the last clause of § 219(2)(d)
  has been in sexual harassment law, and this application often does not
  involve deceit or misrepresentation.  Thus, the Mahar construction of §
  219(2)(d) is also inconsistent with Faragher and Ellerth.

       ¶  45.  More important, we doubt that the Mahar decision would
  determine the result in this case.  As our analysis of the policy
  considerations shows, this is a vastly different case from Mahar.  The
  difference is shown by the Maine court's analysis of  Costos in which the
  Court of Appeals applied § 219(2)(d) as part of Maine law to hold that the
  owner of an inn was vicariously liable when the inn manager entered the
  room of plaintiff guest using a master key and raped her.  The holding of
  the Costos court is contained in the following paragraph:

       Even viewing this case through the narrower focus of the
    commentary on Restatement § 219, which the Gary court found
    helpful, defendants are well within the scope of § 219(2)(d)
    liability.  By virtue of his agency relationship with the
    defendants, as manager of the inn, [the manager] was entrusted
    with the keys to the rooms, including Costos' room, at the Bernard
    House.  Because he was manager of the inn, [he] knew exactly where
    to find Costos.  The jury could find that [the manager] had
    responsibilities to be at the inn or to have others there late at
    night.  In short, because he was defendants' agent, [the manager]
    knew that Costos was staying at the Bernard House, he was able to
    find Costos' room late at night, he had the key to the room and
    used the key to unlock the door, slip into bed beside her as she
    slept, and rape her.

  137 F.3d  at 50.  In Mahar, the Maine court distinguished, but did not
  reject, Costos because the inn manager in that case "acted deceitfully by
  using his position as an employee to learn the room number of the female
  guest, and by misusing a duplicate key to enter her room."  Mahar, 2003 ME
  63, at ¶23. The lesson from Mahar appears to be that the Costos analysis
  correctly interprets § 219(2)(d), if, in addition, plaintiff shows
  misrepresentation or deceit.  In the same way that the Mahar court found
  deceit in Costos, we are convinced that it would find deceit in this case.
   
       ¶  46.  As our discussion suggests, we are more comfortable with the
  analysis in Costos than that in  Mahar, and the Costos analysis is the only
  other construction of § 219(2)(d) that we have not considered above. 
  Costos is consistent with the view of a number of commentators that
  employers should be vicariously liable for torts committed by employees
  involving an abuse of job-created authority, particularly where the tort
  involves sexual abuse.  See L. Jorgenson et al., Transference of Liability:
  Employer Liability for Sexual Misconduct by Therapists, 60 Brook. L. Rev.
  1421, 1435-39 (1995); Note, A Matter of Trust: Imposing Employer Vicarious
  Liability for the Intentional Torts of Employees, 3 D.C. L. Rev. 167,
  183-85 (1995); Note, "Scope of Employment" Redefined: Holding Employers
  Vicariously Liable for Sexual Assaults Committed by Their Employees, 76
  Minn. L. Rev. 1513, 1527-30 (1992).  Each of the articles analyzes cases
  where courts have found vicarious liability under traditional principles,
  but the analysis is debatable and better viewed explicitly as situations
  where the nature and powers of the job created by the employer should give
  rise to vicarious liability even for certain intentional torts outside the
  scope of the employment. 
   
       ¶  47.  Nevertheless, we do not adopt the full rationale of Costos in
  this decision.  Our primary reason is our second introductory point above,
  that we find it best to adopt a rationale as narrow as possible under the
  circumstances.  We are guided by the Supreme Court's decision in Ellerth
  not to venture beyond what is necessary to decide the case.  See 524 U.S.  at 763 ("The aided in the agency relation standard, however, is a
  developing feature of agency law, and we hesitate to render a definitive
  explanation of our understanding of the standard in an area where other
  important considerations must affect our judgment.").  We also note that
  the California Supreme Court, which found vicarious liability for police
  misconduct in Mary M. based on a rationale that is a variation of abuse of
  job-created authority, refused to apply its reasoning to other professions. 
  See John R. v. Oakland Unified Sch. Dist., 769 P.2d 948, 956-57 (Cal. 1989)
  (teacher sexual assault on a ninth-grade student). (FN6) 
   
       ¶  48.  As our third opening point demonstrates, application of §
  219(2)(d) to a sexual assault on a citizen by a law enforcement officer is
  probably the strongest application of the core principles behind §
  219(2)(d) as explained in Faragher.  See L. Jorgenson et al., supra, at
  1435-36 (employer liability based on job-created authority is found most
  commonly in cases involving law enforcement officers).  Thus, based on the
  Faragher analysis, we hold that if plaintiff can show that an on-duty law
  enforcement officer was aided in accomplishing an intentional tort
  involving a sexual assault on the plaintiff by the existence of the
  employment relationship with the law enforcement agency, vicarious
  liability will apply.
   
       ¶  49.   In reaching this decision, we reject the argument of the
  dissent that any policy that allows vicarious liability for intentional
  torts of law enforcement officers must be made by the Legislature.  This is
  a case of first impression in which we are discharging our traditional role
  of defining the common law.  Exactly because we seek to follow the common
  law as it has developed in the jurisdictions in this country, we have used
  the Restatement of Agency to find the appropriate law.  See American Law
  Institute, I Restatement of the Law of Contracts, introduction at viii
  (1932) (explaining that the purpose of a Restatement is "the preparation of
  an orderly restatement of the common law" to reduce uncertainty in the
  law).  In saying this, we do not shirk from our duty "to adapt the common
  law to the changing needs and conditions of the people of this state." Hay
  v. Med. Ctr. Hosp. of Vt., 145 Vt. 533, 542, 496 A.2d 939, 944 (1985). 
  This is not a case like  Hillerby v. Town of Colchester, 167 Vt. 270,
  272-73, 706 A.2d 446, 447 (1997), where our action would reverse a
  long-standing common law principle which the Legislature has endorsed and
  on which it has relied.  Indeed, we have narrowly tailored our holding so
  that we are confident that few future cases will be controlled by it.  If
  the Legislature disagrees with our balancing of the various considerations
  behind this decision, it can and should enact a different vicarious
  liability rule.

       ¶  50.  We turn now to the application of § 219(2)(d), as we have
  interpreted it, to the facts of this case.  As we set out above, the
  superior court granted summary judgment to defendants because it found that
  plaintiff had not made a specific showing to bring herself within the
  language of the section; specifically, the court found: (1) even if Forrest
  was able to gain information about plaintiff while on duty, it was not
  "pursuant to an official investigation"; (2) his position did not aid him
  in gaining information about plaintiff because anyone was free to enter the
  store and ask questions; (3) Forrest never used his gun, handcuffs or other
  instrumentalities in accomplishing the crime; (4) even if Forrest had used
  the instrumentalities in committing the crime, a reasonable person would
  know that such use is not authorized; and (5) there is no evidence that the
  presence of his police car in front of the car warded off other patrons. 
  As is apparent from our rejection of the limiting construction of §
  219(2)(d) adopted by the superior court, we do not find the fourth reason
  relevant.  We disagree that we can rely on the other reasons to deny
  summary judgment, generally because they are based on inferences that have
  not been viewed most favorably to the plaintiff as required by our summary
  judgment standard.  See King, 2003 VT 34, at ¶7.
   
       ¶  51.  The issue of how Forrest gained access to plaintiff all alone
  in the store is disputed.  One witness described that Forrest had been
  asking questions about plaintiff's work schedule.  He entered the store
  when another employee was also working and bought food and left.  He
  reentered about fifteen to thirty minutes after the second employee went
  off duty and loitered until all customers left.  He parked his cruiser in
  front of the store with the parking lights on.  When plaintiff's mother
  called plaintiff, Forrest took the telephone, terminated the conversation
  and hung it up.

       ¶  52.  The evidence went to Forrest's special access to plaintiff
  created by his job and enabling him to commit the tort.  The trial court
  concluded that the information about plaintiff's schedule was not gathered
  in an investigation and could have been obtained by anyone on inquiry, and
  that there was no evidence that Forrest deterred anyone from entering the
  store.  We believe that a jury could conclude that others could not ask the
  kind of questions and gain the kind of access Forrest did without his
  special status as a law enforcement officer.  Moreover, the jurors could
  conclude based on their own experience that the presence of the cruiser
  with its parking lights on would deter persons from entering the store.  We
  do not believe that the court could find as a matter of law that Forrest
  did not have special access to plaintiff: access created by the existence
  of the agency relationship that aided the commission of the tort. 

       ¶  53.  With respect to Forrest's weapons, other instruments, and
  ability to inflict injury, the superior court relied upon the fact that
  Forrest never used his gun or other instruments on plaintiff.  We do not
  believe the absence of evidence of actual use was determinative.

       ¶  54.  The evidence bearing on the issue came, almost entirely, from
  plaintiff's deposition; her testimony has aspects that support both her
  case and that of defendant.  She testified that Forrest told her on the day
  of the sexual assault that if he ever used his gun he would shoot to kill. 
  When asked whether she complained when Forrest grabbed her ponytail and
  used it to pull her head from side to side, she answered:
   
    A.  I kind of just went along with it hoping that he would just
    leave and go back to work.  And I was hoping somebody would come
    in the store.  I really - um, he was - had a controlling power
    over me.  I mean he had a gun.  He had handcuffs.  I didn't - I
    didn't - I don't -

  She went on to acknowledge that Forrest never threatened to use his gun or
  handcuffs.  When asked why she didn't use the telephone to call for help,
  she answered first that she "kept thinking about her cousin," who was
  killed in a domestic violence incident and then that she was "too scared"
  and "who knows what would have happened.  Once again, this man had a gun." 
  When asked what made her fear that Forrest would use the gun, she answered
  that it was the comment that if he ever used the gun, it would be to shoot
  to kill.  After plaintiff described the sexual assault, she answered
  questions about her thoughts and motives as follows:

    Q.  Is there any other reason why you were intimidated by Richard
    Forrest?

    A.  Just his, his power.  I mean he was a police officer.

    Q.  Well, you didn't have any problem calling the police about a
    police officer who allegedly raped you, right?

    A.  Right.

    Q.  I mean was there some reason why you felt that you couldn't do
    something to help yourself because he was a police officer?

    A.  I don't know.

    Q.  Did it even enter into your mind?

    A.  I guess not.

    Q.  Right.  He was just a big guy who was physically forcing you
    to do something you didn't want, right?

             ATTORNEY MYERSON: Objection.

             ATTORNEY LYNN: Q. Right?

    A.  I, I don't know.

    Q.  Well, you just don't remember?

    A.  I do remember.  I just - I don't know if it was because of his
    uniform or I - I don't know.

    Q.  It may have been; it may not have been?

    A.  Yes.

    Q.  At this point, you just don't remember?

    A.  I - I do remember.  I just - I don't - I don't know.

       ¶  55.  Defendants rely primarily on the last statements above as
  showing that the fact that Forrest was a police officer had nothing to do
  with plaintiff's submission to the sexual assault.  Plaintiff relies upon
  her earlier statements that she went along because Forrest had controlling
  power over her because of the handcuffs and the gun.
   
       ¶  56.  We have cautioned about granting summary judgment "in any
  cases in which the resolution of the dispositive issue requires
  determination of state of mind, as the fact finder normally should be given
  the opportunity to make a determination of the credibility of witness, and
  the demeanor of the witnesses whose state of mind is at issue."  Barbagallo
  v. Gregory, 150 Vt. 653, 653, 553 A.2d 151, 151 (1988) (mem.).  Here, the
  extent to which Forrest's position as a law enforcement officer, with the
  gun and handcuffs, enabled him to force or persuade plaintiff to perform
  fellatio on him without significant physical resistance or cries for help
  is disputed.  The issue goes to plaintiff's state of mind, and we do not
  believe that her state of mind can be determined as a matter of law from
  the summary judgment record.  A jury could find based on this evidence that
  despite the fact that Forrest never used or threatened to use his gun on
  plaintiff, his position and implements sufficiently intimidated and scared
  plaintiff to enable him to commit the tort.

  ¶  57.  In summary, we find that none of the reasons advanced by the trial
  court warrant summary judgment for defendants on the § 219(2)(d) claim.

                               IV.  Conclusion

       ¶  58.  Although we conclude that the superior court correctly held
  that defendants were entitled to summary judgment on the claim under 24
  V.S.A. § 309 and on the theories of vicarious liability we have examined in
  the past, we also conclude that a fact-finder could find defendants
  vicariously liable under § 219(2)(d) of the Restatement (Second) of Agency,
  a theory of liability we expressly adopt.  Specifically, the fact-finder
  can find that Forrest was "aided in accomplishing the tort by the existence
  of the agency relation," as we have defined that language in this decision. 

       Reversed and remanded.  



                                       FOR THE COURT:


                                       ___________________________________
                                       Associate Justice


------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Dissenting


       ¶  59.  SKOGLUND, J., dissenting.   I do not quarrel with the Court's
  adoption of § 219(2)(d) of the Restatement (Second) of Agency as an
  exception to our scope-of-employment rule for purposes of determining
  vicarious liability.  I submit, however, that in its broad application of
  the last clause of that section to the facts of this case, specifically a
  sexual assault committed by a law enforcement officer while acting outside
  the scope of employment, the majority has created a threat of vicarious
  liability that knows no borders. While the majority limits its holding to
  sexual assaults committed by "on-duty law enforcement officers," ante, at 
  ¶ 48, the standard that it articulates applies to a broad range of
  employees whose duties grant them unique access to and authority over
  others, such as teachers, physicians, nurses, therapists, probation
  officers, and correctional officers, to name but a few.  As the trial court
  here aptly observed, the Court's interpretation could virtually
  "eviscerate[] the general scope of employment rule."  Whether today's
  holding stands as a legal aberration, a special departure from the general
  principles of respondeat superior created exclusively for law enforcement
  agencies, or the first in a new line of cases imposing vicarious liability
  on public and private employers for the sexual misconduct of their
  employees, only time will tell.  In either case, irreparable and
  unwarranted damage will have been done, not only to the law enforcement
  agencies unfairly singled out for disparate treatment by today's decision,
  but to every public and private employer compelled to defend itself against
  the inevitable spate of lawsuits seeking to extend today's ruling. 
  Therefore, I respectfully dissent.  
   
       ¶  60.  Like the finding of a duty of care in negligence law, the
  imposition of vicarious liability under agency principles flows not from
  the rote application of rules, but from a considered policy judgment that
  it is fair and reasonable to hold an employer liable for the harmful
  actions of its employee.  As Justice Souter, writing for the United States
  Supreme Court in Faragher v. City of Boca Raton, 524 U.S. 775 (1998),
  cogently observed: "In the instances in which there is a genuine question
  about the employer's responsibility for harmful conduct he did not in fact
  authorize, a holding that the conduct falls within the scope of employment
  ultimately expresses a conclusion not of fact but of law. . . . [T]he
  'highly indefinite phrase' [vicarious liability] is 'devoid of meaning in
  itself' and is 'obviously no more than a bare formula to cover the
  unordered and unauthorized acts of the servant for which it is found to be
  expedient to charge the master with liability, as well as to exclude other
  acts for which it is not.' " Id. at 796 (quoting W. Keaton et al., Prosser
  and Keaton on Law of Torts § 502 (5th ed. 1984); see also Yamaguchi v.
  Harnsmut, 130 Cal. Rptr. 2d 706, 713 (Ct. App. 2003) ("[Vicarious]
  liability is based not on the employer's fault, but on public policies
  concerning who should bear the risk of harm created by the employer's
  enterprise.").

       ¶  61.  In its lengthy opinion, the majority here devotes considerable
  attention to the doctrinal debate over the meaning of an opaque phrase in a
  nonbinding provision of the restatement of the law of agency, yet barely
  addresses the broad policy ramifications of its decision holding a county
  sheriff's department vicariously liable for a sexual assault committed by a
  deputy sheriff acting entirely outside the normal scope of his employment
  duties. With respect, I submit that the majority's analysis is inadequate
  to support so extraordinary a holding, and that such a significant
  expansion of public entity liability should be left to the branch best
  equipped to consider all of the underlying social and economic
  ramifications, the Legislature.  
   
       ¶  62.  "Under the settled doctrine of respondeat superior, an
  employer or master is held vicariously liable for the tortious acts of an
  employee or servant committed during, or incidental to, the scope of
  employment."  Brueckner v. Norwich Univ., 169 Vt. 118, 122-23, 730 A.2d 1086, 1090 (1999).  We have recognized that there are circumstances where
  even the intentional, unauthorized torts of an employee may be seen as
  "intending to advance the employer's interests" and therefore fairly
  considered within the scope of employment.  Sweet v. Roy, 173 Vt. 418,
  431-32, 801 A.2d 694, 704 (2002).  Outside the context of sexual harassment
  in the workplace, however - a special case more fully discussed below -
  this Court has never held that an employer may be vicariously liable for a
  sexual assault committed by an employee. (FN7)
         
       ¶  63.  Indeed, consistent with Vermont precedent, the majority
  accurately characterizes Deputy Forrest's crime as "rooted in prurient
  self-interest" - rather than as intended to advance the interests of his
  employer - and therefore outside the proper scope of his employment. Ante,
  at ¶18.  Nevertheless, relying on an ambiguous rule cited by the United
  States Supreme Court in two workplace discrimination decisions, Faragher,
  524 U.S.  at 801, and Burlington Indus., Inc. v. Ellerth, 524 U.S. 742, 759
  (1998), the majority concludes that Deputy Forrest's employer - the
  Bennington County Sheriff's Department - may be held vicariously liable to
  the victim of his crime.  The majority's path to this startling conclusion
  is worth exploring.
   
       ¶  64.  The rule in question is set forth in § 219(2)(d) of the
  Restatement (Second) of Agency, which provides that a master is not subject
  to liability for the torts of a servant acting outside the scope of
  employment unless "the servant purported to act or to speak on behalf of
  the principal and there was reliance upon apparent authority, or he was
  aided in accomplishing the tort by the existence of the  agency relation." 
  Restatement (Second) of Agency § 219(2)(d) (1958).  While acknowledging -
  as indeed it must - that there was no evidence the Department had conferred
  upon Deputy Forrest the "apparent authority" to engage in sexual assault,
  the majority nevertheless concludes that there was sufficient disputed
  evidence that he was "aided in accomplishing the tort by the agency
  relation" to survive summary judgment.  In support of this conclusion, the
  majority relies on Faragher and Ellerth, companion cases in which the
  United States Supreme Court addressed the circumstances in which an
  employer may held liable,  under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964,
  for sexual harassment perpetrated by a supervisor against an employee. 
  Observing that numerous lower court decisions had drawn upon a variety of 
  agency law principles enumerated in the Restatement (Second) of Agency to
  reach conflicting holdings,  Justice Souter, writing for the Court in
  Faragher, cautioned that "[t]he proper analysis . . .  calls not for a
  mechanical application of indefinite and malleable factors set forth in the
  Restatement, see, e.g., §§ 219, 228, 229, but rather an inquiry into the
  reasons that would support a conclusion that harassing behavior ought to be
  held within the scope of a supervisor's employment, and the reasons for the
  opposite view."  524 U.S.  at 797 (emphasis added).   


       ¶  65.  The Court concluded that the Congressional policies underlying
  Title VII - to prevent harassment in the workplace and encourage employers
  to adopt anti-harassment policies and establish reliable and accessible
  internal grievance mechanisms - would be well served by holding an employer
  vicariously liable when the misuse of supervisory authority,  even if
  technically outside the scope of employment, creates a pervasively hostile
  work environment sufficient to alter the terms or conditions of a victim's
  employment or results in a tangible negative employment decision. (FN8)   
  In so holding, the Court found "that the aided-by-agency-relation principle
  embodied in § 219(2)(d) of the Restatement provides an appropriate starting
  point for determining liability for the kind of harassment presented here." 
  Faragher, 524 U.S.  at 802.  The Court was careful to explain, however, that
  in relying on § 219(2)(d) its intention was not "to make a pronouncement of
  agency law in general," but rather "to adapt agency concepts to the
  practical objectives of Title VII."  Id. at 802 n.3. (FN9)  
        
       ¶  66.  Since the Faragher and Ellerth decisions, courts and
  commentators have disputed the proper scope of the "aided-in-accomplishing"
  clause of § 219(2)(d) outside the Title VII context.  Some have severely
  criticized the Court for distorting the principles of vicarious liability
  embodied in § 219(2)(d), arguing that the Court fundamentally
  misinterpreted the second clause as completely independent of the first,
  and that properly understood it applies only where the agent "purported to
  act or speak on behalf of the principal and he was aided in accomplishing
  the tort by the existence of the agency relationship." P. Dalley, All in a
  Day's Work: Employers' Vicarious Liability for Sexual Harassment, 104 W.
  Va. L. Rev. 517, 550 (2002).  According to the critics, the result of that
  misunderstanding, if applied elsewhere, would be to "vastly expand
  vicarious tort liability, and would make the scope of employment
  requirement largely superfluous."  Id.   Others, relying on the history of
  § 219(2)(d) and the debates among the drafters at the 1956 Proceedings of
  the American Law Institute, have argued that the aided-in-accomplishing
  clause "does not properly apply in intentional physical tort cases that
  lack elements of reliance and deceit." Casenote, Costos v. Coconut Island
  Corp.: Creating a Vicarious Liability Catchall under the
  Aided-by-Agency-Relation Theory, 73 U. Colo.  L.  Rev. 1099, 1130 (2002);
  accord Mahar v. StoneWood Transp., 2003 ME 63, ¶21, 823 A.2d 540 ("section
  219(2)(d) . . .  is limited in its application to cases within the apparent
  authority of the employee, or when the employee's conduct involves
  misrepresentation or deceit").  An example  of such reasoning can be found
  in Costos v. Coconut Island Corp., 137 F.3d 46, 49-50 (1st Cir. 1998),
  where the court held that a hotel may be vicariously liable for the rape of
  a hotel guest by the hotel manager because the manager had been entrusted
  with the room keys, knew in what room the victim was located, and had
  access to the hotel at night, and therefore was "aided in accomplishing the
  tort" by the agency relationship. 

       ¶  67.  Weighing in on this doctrinal debate, the majority here
  rejects the arguments for a narrow construction of the second clause of §
  219(2)(d) in favor of a broader reading that would impose vicarious
  liability on a law enforcement agency whenever the "plaintiff can show that
  an on-duty law enforcement officer was aided in accomplishing an
  intentional tort involving a sexual assault on the plaintiff by the
  existence of the employment relationship with the law enforcement agency." 
  Ante, at ¶48. Such a reading is consistent, the majority argues, with
  Ellerth and Faragher, where the employers purportedly created the special
  conditions of "access" and "power" that enabled their employees to engage
  in sexual misconduct.  Ante, at ¶¶29, 30.
   
       ¶  68.  With respect, I submit that the majority's analysis and
  conclusion are fundamentally flawed.  First, as noted, the high court never
  intended for its decisions in Faragher and Ellerth to have any influence on
  the development of common-law agency principles or the application of §
  219(2)(d) outside the specific context of Title VII.  Second, the drafters'
  intentions with respect to § 219(2)(d), whether expansive or narrow, are
  largely beside the point when it comes to deciding whether to hold a law
  enforcement agency vicariously liable for a sexual assault perpetrated by
  one of its officers.  That issue - as noted - turns on policy
  considerations of a broad nature, considerations that the majority barely
  acknowledges and insufficiently analyzes.       

       ¶  69.  The "policy" most pertinent to the issue, according to the
  majority, is the "extraordinary power that a law enforcement officer has
  over a citizen."  Ante, at ¶34.  Others mentioned are the "unique access"
  that a police officer's position affords for the commission of sexual
  assaults, particularly in the current "era of community policing," ante, at 
  ¶¶37, 38; the "vulnerab[ility]" of the victim whose safety the officer is
  charged to protect, ante, at  ¶36; the assumption that "imposing liability
  on the employer may prevent [the] recurrence of tortious conduct by
  creating an incentive for vigilance by those in a position to prevent it";
  ante, at ¶39; and finally the idea that "the costs of police misconduct
  should be borne by the community because the community derives substantial
  benefits from the lawful exercise of police power."  Id.   
   
       ¶  70.  None of these asserted policy considerations withstands
  scrutiny.  While it is certainly enlightening to learn that we live in a
  new "era of community policing" (like many so-called reforms, the concept
  of "community policing," viewed in historical context, looks very much like
  the old-fashioned policeman "on the beat" that existed for many years), the
  majority fails to explain how "community policing"  forms the policy basis
  for holding the Sheriff's Department vicariously liable for the sexual
  assault committed by Deputy Forrest. The majority notes that Deputy
  Forrest's ostensible justification for being in the store may have been
  related to his police function, and that  the assault may therefore have
  been facilitated by his employment and aided by his "power" relationship
  with the victim.  But this does not answer the question of why it is fair
  to hold a law enforcement agency liable for an officer's outrageous abuse
  of that power.  When there has been no showing that the police department
  itself was negligent in hiring, training, or supervising its officer, why
  is it fair or reasonable to burden the public with liability for a sexual
  assault perpetrated by a rogue employee solely for his own twisted personal
  gratification?  

       ¶  71.  It is certainly true that police officers occupy a position of
  trust and authority by virtue of their employment, and that this authority
  informed the decision on which the majority principally relies, Mary M. v.
  City of Los Angeles, 814 P.2d 1341, 1349 (Cal. 1991). What the majority
  does not explain, however, is how - if at all - this distinguishes police
  officers from many other employees, both public and private, who occupy
  parallel positions of authority.  An employee's "access" or opportunity to
  commit an intentional tort may be facilitated by a "trust" relationship in
  many different contexts (e.g., the postal service employee or UPS deliverer
  admitted to a home by virtue of the trust engendered by the position, the
  tow-truck operator called to help an unsuspecting motorist stranded on the
  highway, the psychiatrist entrusted with a child in the privacy of his or
  her office), and the range of employees vested with some form of  "power" -
  in many cases extraordinary power - over others by virtue of their
  employment is considerable.  Apart from labeling the police officer's
  authority as "unique," the majority fails to explain what qualitatively
  distinguishes a law enforcement officer's power over a "vulnerable"
  detainee from a correctional officer's power over a prisoner, a teacher's
  power over a student, a psychiatric nurse's power over a mentally ill
  patient, a residential counselor's power over the teen-age residents of a
  group home, or a probation officer's power over a probationer, to name only
  a few analogous relationships.  
    
       ¶  72.  Indeed, building on the holding in Mary M., some courts have
  advocated for the extension of vicarious liability to other professions
  based precisely on such unexamined considerations.  See, e.g., Harrington
  v. Louisiana State Bd. of Elementary & Secondary Educ., 714 So. 2d 845,
  851-52 (La. Ct. App.), cert. denied, 728 So. 2d 1287, 1288 (La. 1998) (rape
  of student by community college instructor may be imputed to state employer
  based on "authority given to [the instructor]").  Other courts,
  however,  have rejected the facile argument for vicarious liability based
  simply on the employee's authority.  In Niece v. Elmview Group Home, 929 P.2d 420, 430 (Wash. 1997), for example, the court declined to hold a
  residential facility vicariously liable for an employee's rape of a
  resident absent "sound policy reason[s] to shift the loss created by the
  employee's intentional wrong from one innocent party to another."  Even
  more significantly, several justices of the California Supreme Court have
  concluded that Mary M. was wrongly decided and should be overruled.  See
  Farmers Ins. Group v. County of Santa Clara, 906 P.2d 440, 459 (Cal. 1995)
  (Baxter, J., concurring) (writing separately to express his "disagreement
  with Mary M."); id. at 460-61 (George, J., joined by Lucas, C.J.,
  concurring) (characterizing Mary M. as  "an aberration that should be
  overruled"); see also Lisa M. v. Henry Mayo Newhall Mem'l Hosp., 907 P.2d 358, 367 (Cal. 1995) (George, J., joined by Lucas, C.J., concurring)
  (calling for Mary M. to be overruled).  While concurring in the court's
  unwillingness to extend the Mary M.  rule to other professions, these
  justices have candidly acknowledged the absence of any principled
  distinction between the scope of authority exercised by police officers and
  that of other professions such as teachers, and have called for the end to
  the "special rules, purportedly applicable only to on-duty police
  officers."  Farmers Ins., 906 P.2d  at 461 (George, J. & Lucas, C.J.,
  concurring) ("Police officers should be governed by the same standard
  employed in determining whether the misconduct of other employees falls
  within the scope of employment.  Police officers occupy a position of trust
  and authority in our society, but the same is true of other public
  employees, such as teachers.").     

       ¶  73.  The majority also suggests that the imposition of vicarious
  liability for intentional sexual misconduct by police officers serves the
  public good by providing an "incentive" for better training and
  supervision.  The injury-prevention rationale might work in the context of
  workplace sexual harassment, but I fail to understand how better training
  will deter an intentional sexual assault committed solely out of personal
  motivations.   Indeed,  the majority does not cite a single example or
  empirical authority suggesting what the Sheriff's Department might do
  differently to prevent future assaults.   See Note,  Mary M. v. City of Los
  Angeles: Should a City Be Held Liable Under Respondeat Superior for a Rape
  by a Police Officer?, 28 U.S.F. L. Rev. 419, 450-53 (1994) (noting that
  employers' practical ability to prevent sexual assaults of this nature is
  "slight").  Nor does the majority even mention the greater likelihood that
  vicarious liability in these circumstances may have negative public
  consequences, inducing departments to curtail the kinds of beneficial
  activities - such as "community policing" - that place officers in isolated
  situations with members of the public, or encouraging them to take
  defensive measures such as two-person police patrols, however costly to the
  public.  See id. (sexual assaults such as that in Mary M. "realistically
  cannot be prevented without causing negative consequences for law
  enforcement").
   
       ¶  74.  Equally misguided is the majority's reliance on the notion
  that vicarious liability serves the interest of spreading the "costs of
  police misconduct" among those who benefit "from the lawful exercise of
  police power."  Ante, at ¶39.   Risk spreading assumes that the employer
  can reasonably anticipate the loss and pass the cost of injuries to the
  beneficiaries of the enterprise in the form of higher rates or prices.  See
  G. Calabresi, Some Thoughts on Risk Distribution and the Law of Torts, 70
  Yale L.J. 499, 543-44 (1961).  Public agencies such as police departments
  or school districts, however, cannot raise their prices, and, short of
  increasing already overwhelming property tax burdens, their only option may
  be to cut funding elsewhere.  See Note, supra, 28 U.S.F. L. Rev. at 456
  ("Imposition of vicarious liability could have the effect of taking away
  funding to pay judgments that would otherwise be allocated to pay for
  police services."); see also TBH v. Meyer, 168 Vt. 149, 154, 716 A.2d 31,
  35 (1998) (if insurer were required to cover costs of insured's sexual
  misconduct, causing other policy holders to bear expense of passed along
  costs, "the average person  . . . would cringe at the very suggestion")
  (citation omitted).

       ¶  75.  It has also been suggested that vicarious liability is
  necessary in these kinds of situations to ensure the compensation of tort
  victims.  Mary M., 814 P.2d  at 1348-49.  But is it really necessary or fair
  to impose liability without fault when the opportunity exists to hold
  employers directly liable if it can be proven that they were negligent in
  hiring, training, or supervising the tortfeasor?  See Brueckner, 169 Vt. at
  126, 730 A.2d  at 1093 (principal may be held directly liable for damages
  resulting from negligent supervision of employee); TBH, 168 Vt. at 154, 716 A.2d  at 35 (although denying coverage for sexual misconduct "will deny
  [victim] a potential source of compensation  .  .  .  [e]nsuring
  compensation of the victim . . . is outweighed by precisely fixing both
  moral and economic liability").  While theoretical arguments could be made
  on both sides of the issue, the record in this case is devoid of any actual
  evidence to inform the Court's decision.   
   
       ¶  76.  Finally, in addition to the foregoing, the majority
  implies that support for the imposition of vicarious liability in these
  circumstances may be found in cases such as Red Elk v. United States, 62 F.3d 1102, 1107 (8th Cir. 1995), which held that a sexual assault by an
  on-duty police officer may be sufficiently "foreseeable" to fall within the
  scope of employment and therefore may be attributable to the employer.  The
  proposition that it is foreseeable that a police officer may sexually
  assault an innocent victim merely because the officer has the power or the
  opportunity to do so has been soundly rejected by other courts. See, e.g.,
  Bates v. United States, 701 F.2d 737, 741-42 (8th Cir. 1983); Gambling v.
  Cornish, 426 F. Supp. 1153, 1154-55 (N.D. Ill. 1977); Boykin v. Dist. of
  Columbia, 484 A.2d 560, 562 (D.C. 1984); Bates v. Doria, 502 N.E.2d 454,
  457-58 (Ill. App. Ct. 1986).  As Justice George aptly observed in Farmers,
  "it is one thing to say that a public entity must expect that some police
  officers will abuse their authority by, for example, using excessive force
  in effectuating an arrest or detention and quite another to conclude that a
  public entity must expect that some officers will rape women they have
  detained." 906 P.2d  at 461 (George, J., concurring). (FN10)
        
       ¶  77.  While purporting to rely on the "unique" power exercised by
  on-duty police officers, the majority opinion fails to explain why this
  provides a reasoned basis for departing from the usual rules of respondeat
  superior for law enforcement agencies, and more disturbingly fails to set
  forth any basis to distinguish a police officer's "power" from that of
  other employees in analogous positions of authority over vulnerable
  populations.   It is no excuse to assert - as the Court does here - that
  the decision is intended to be "narrow" and not "venture beyond what is
  necessary to decide the case," ante, at ¶47, when the potential costs of
  doctrinal inexactitude are so great.
   
       ¶  78.  Even in the relatively "narrow" employment context of law
  enforcement agencies the majority provides no clear basis to limit the
  imposition of vicarious liability.  The majority rejects the notion of
  imposing "strict liability" on the Department for the criminal acts of its
  employees, see ante, at ¶13, yet provides no reasoned basis to distinguish
  this case from any other involving police misconduct.  The police officer's
  "access" to the victim in this case was no different from any other patron
  of the convenience store, and the idea that a police cruiser parked in
  front would "deter" others from entering the store, ante, at ¶52, is pure
  speculation.  Furthermore, nothing in the record suggests that the assault
  was particularly facilitated by Deputy Forrest's "authority" as a law
  enforcement officer; any other assailant with a handgun and the physical
  power could have committed the same offense.  Thus, while the majority
  purports to reject the notion that simply owning a badge, gun, and uniform
  are enough to create vicarious liability its holding suggests exactly the
  reverse.        
   
       ¶  79.  Recently, in Smith v. Parrott, 2003 VT 64, ¶ 7, 833 A.2d 843,
  this Court was presented with a similar opportunity to broadly expand the
  potential tort liability of a profession, in that case physicians and other
  health care professionals, by departing from the traditional causation
  standard and adopting  the so-called "loss of chance" doctrine. While
  acknowledging that the doctrine had received substantial support among
  legal commentators and had been accepted in a number of jurisdictions, we
  nevertheless cautioned that its adoption here raised "fundamental questions
  about its potential impact on not only the cost, but the very practice of
  medicine in Vermont; about its effect on  .  .  .  other professions and
  the principles - if any - which might justify its application to medicine
  but not other fields."  Id. at ¶ 13. Confronted with these uncertainties, we
  concluded that the decision " 'involves significant and far-reaching policy
  concerns' more properly left to the Legislature, where hearings may be
  held, data collected, and competing interests heard before a wise decision
  is reached."  Id. at  14 (quoting Crosby v. United States, 48 F. Supp. 2d 924, 931 (D. Alaska 1999)).  I submit that prudence dictates a similarly
  cautious approach here, where the issues are even more complex, the
  ramifications for the public welfare and safety even greater, and the
  Court's obvious lack of information for policy formulation that much more
  significant.  See Niece, 929 P.2d  at 430-31 (declining to impose vicarious
  liability on group home for employee's rape of resident because "complex
  questions of public policy" as to how the cost of such liability would be
  borne and how it would affect residential care "dictates that we defer to
  the Legislature").  The better part of wisdom here is to defer to the
  Legislature, which is uniquely equipped to "engage in the "fact- finding
  and problem-solving process" necessary to an informed and balanced decision
  on the question of whether a police department may be held vicariously
  liable for an intentional sexual assault committed by an officer.  Hillerby
  v. Town of Colchester, 167 Vt. 270, 276, 706 A.2d 446, 449 (1997).  I
  would, therefore, affirm the summary judgment of the trial court in favor
  of defendants. 

       ¶  80.  I am authorized to state that Chief Justice Amestoy joins this
  dissent.    


       
                                       _______________________________________
                                       Associate Justice



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                                  Footnotes


FN1.  Plaintiff also sued Bennington County and the State of Vermont, but
  the case against these defendants was dismissed, and plaintiff has not
  appealed this dismissal.

FN2.  Forrest's sexual misconduct also directly violated explicit Bennington
  County Sheriff's Department policy prohibiting sexual activities while on
  duty.  This fact, while relevant, is not determinative in our scope of
  employment inquiry because "there is no requirement that the master
  specifically authorize the precise action the servant took."  Sweet v. Roy,
  173 Vt. 418,  432, 801 A.2d 694, 704 (2002).

FN3.  In following the United States Supreme Court decisions, we reject the
  dissent's claim that the Supreme Court "never intended for its decisions .
  . . to have any influence on the development of common law agency
  principles or the application of § 219(2)(d) outside the specific context
  of Title VII."  Post, at ¶ 68.  The Supreme Court applied the Restatement of
  Agency because it found that "Congress wanted courts to look to agency
  principles for guidance" in deciding hostile environment sex discrimination
  cases under Title VII.  Meritor Sav. Bank, FSB v. Vinson, 477 U.S. 57, 72
  (1986).  Thus, in Burlington Indus., Inc. v. Ellerth, 524 U.S. 742, 754
  (1998), the Court noted that it was relying on "the general common law of
  agency." (Citation omitted).   The Court noted that state court decisions
  could be "instructive," but they often relied upon federal decisions, id.
  at 755, and found the Restatement of Agency a useful starting point to find
  the general common law.  Id.  It went through the various sections of the
  Restatement (Second) of Agency and finally centered on § 219(2)(d) as the
  most useful.  It then applied the "aided in the agency relation principle"
  of § 219(2)(d) to the situation before it.  Id. at 760-65.  The analysis in
  Faragher v. City of Boca Raton, 524 U.S. 775, 801-02 (1998), is similar,
  and as noted in the text, the Court resolved a dispute over the meaning of
  the language of § 219(2)(d), holding that the "aided-by-agency-relation
  principle" was not merely a refinement of apparent authority. 

       It is, of course, the nature of the common law that every appellate
  decision represents the development of the common law, and nothing in the
  Supreme Court decisions suggests they are not an integral part of that
  process.  Indeed, the resolution of the dispute over the meaning of §
  219(2)(d) in Faragher is exactly the kind of decision that best defines and
  develops the common law.  No common-law court engaged in this process, and
  certainly not the highest court of this country, would expect that a
  common-law decision on one set of facts would have no influence on future
  decisions applying the same legal principle to a different factual
  scenario.

FN4.  The California Supreme Court also concluded "[t]here is little or no
  risk that preventive measures would significantly interfere with the
  ability of police departments to enforce the law and to protect society
  from criminal acts."  Mary M. v. City of Los Angeles, 814 P.2d 1341, 1348
  (Cal. 1991) (en banc).

FN5.  We do not war with the first limitation of Gary v. Long, 59 F.3d 1391
  (D.C. Cir. 1995), which was drawn from the Barnes v. Costle, 561 F.2d 983
  (D.C. Cir. 1977) (MacKinnon, J., concurring), concurrence and is consistent
  with the language of the Restatement section.  Plaintiff's theory is
  consistent with that limitation.

FN6.  The dissent creates a cross-fire of criticism, arguing first that the
  decision is so broad as to create "a threat of vicarious liability that
  knows no borders," post, at ¶59, and then that it is too narrow because it
  "fails to set forth any basis to distinguish a police officer's 'power'
  from that of other employees in analogous positions of authority over
  vulnerable populations" and represents "it is because we say so"
  jurisprudence.  Post, at ¶78.  The criticism does not prompt us to decide
  cases not before us.  We do cite the California cases to point out that
  principled distinctions can be drawn between law enforcement officers and
  others in positions of authority.  Whether we should adopt those
  distinctions should be left to future decisions.

       On this point, the dissent places significance on the fact that
  "several justices of the California Supreme Court have concluded that Mary
  M. was wrongly decided and should be overruled."  Post, at ¶ 73.  This
  criticism is misleading to the extent that it implies that the justices who
  authored Mary M. have changed their position or that Mary M. has been
  overruled.  On the vicarious liability holding, Mary M. was a 5-to-2
  decision, with Justices Baxter and Lucas writing a long and detailed
  concurrence where they dissented on this point.  See 814 P.2d  at 1357-68. 
  In December of 1995, roughly four years after issuing Mary M., the court
  revisited the vicarious liability principles in Farmers Ins. Group v.
  County of Santa Clara, 906 P.2d 440 (Cal. 1995) and Lisa M.v. Henry Mayo
  Newhall Mem'l Hosp., 907 P.2d 358 (Cal. 1995), the cases cited in the
  dissent.  In each of these cases, the plaintiff argued that the principles
  of Mary M. should be extended to cover the facts of the situation before
  the court: in Farmers Insurance Group to the sexual harassment of a deputy
  sheriff by another deputy sheriff and in Lisa M. to sexual fondling of a
  hospital patient by an ultrasound technician during an examination.  In
  both, a majority of the court found Mary M. distinguishable.

       Justices Baxter and Lucas reiterated their disagreement with Mary M.,
  arguing that it should be overruled for the reasons they stated previously. 
  They were joined by one new justice, Justice George, who replaced one of
  the Mary M. majority justices.  Contrary to the dissent in this case, I
  draw no significance from the fact that those who disagreed with Mary M.
  continue to adhere to their position or that they are joined by an
  additional justice who did not sit on Mary M.  I do find it significant,
  however, that Mary M. remains the law of California.  Although the
  California Supreme Court has not revisited the decision since 1995, it is
  being applied, and distinguished where appropriate, in decisions of the
  California Court of Appeals.  See, e.g., Maria D. v. Westec Residential
  Security, Inc., 102 Cal. Rptr. 2d 326, 326-27 (Ct. App. 2000) (Mary M does
  not apply to rape by a private security guard); Thorn v. City of Glendale,
  35 Cal. Rptr. 2d 1 (Ct. App. 1994) (Mary M. does not apply to suit against
  the city for action of fire marshal in setting fire to a building the
  marshal was inspecting).  The analysis in these cases, as well as in
  Farmers Insurance Group, Lisa M., and John R. v. Oakland Unified School
  District, is a strong response to the dissent's argument that the
  circumstances in this case cannot be rationally distinguished from others
  where the intentional tort is committed by a person with a position of
  authority over a vulnerable person.

FN7.  Derivative or vicarious liability of an employer for the intentional
  misconduct of an employee is to be distinguished, of course, from an
  employer's direct liability for the negligent hiring or supervision of an
  employee. Brueckner v. Norwich Univ., 169 Vt. 118, 126, 730 A.2d 1086,
  1093 (1999).  There was no allegation or evidence here, however, that the
  assault was the result of the Sheriff's Department's failure to adequately
  screen, train, or supervise Deputy Forrest.

FN8.  In distinguishing the two types of discrimination, the Court explained
  that where the supervisory misconduct results in a tangible employment
  action, such as firing, failing to promote, or reassignment, it "requires
  an official act of the enterprise, a company act," and thus "becomes for
  Title VII purposes the act of the employer."  Burlington Indus., Inc. v.
  Ellerth, 524 U.S. 742, 762 (1998).  For sexual harassment not involving a
  tangible employment decision, the Court found that imposing vicarious
  liability upon the employer would provide incentives to promote the
  policies of Title VII, but also recognized that the employer should be able
  to assert as an affirmative defense that it "had exercised reasonable care
  to avoid harassment and to eliminate it when it might occur, and that the
  complaining employee had failed to act with like reasonable care to take
  advantage of the employer's safeguards."  Faragher v. City of Boca Raton,
  524 U.S. 775, 805 (1998).      

FN9.  Even before the Supreme Court's decisions in Faragher and Ellerth,
  this Court in Allen v. Dep't of Employment & Training, 159 Vt. 286, 618 A.2d 1317 (1992), reached a similar conclusion concerning an employer's
  potential liability for sexual harassment in the workplace.  See  id. at
  291, 618 A.2d  at 1320 (relying on Title VII cases and § 219(2)(d) to
  suggest that knowledge of supervisor's sexual harassment of employee could
  in some circumstances be imputed to employer)

FN10.  In Red Elk v. United States, 62 F.3d 1102, 1104 (8th Cir. 1995), the
  thirteen year old victim was picked up by a tribal officer and raped in the
  officer's cruiser.  The court of appeals described "five more incidents of
  intercourse" with the victim in which "in some instances the victim
  voluntarily submitted" until she later "put an end to the relationship."
  Id. at 1104.  To describe the multiple sexual assaults of a
  thirteen-year-old girl by a grown man as a "relationship" and suggest that
  she "voluntarily submitted" discredits the opinion's overall analysis.