Washington Supreme Court Decisions 2017

Douglass v. Shamrock Paving, Inc. (Majority)  
Date: December 21, 2017
Docket Number: 94087-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Landowners Harlan and Maxine Douglass (Douglass) brought a private right of action against Shamrock Paving Inc. under the Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA), chapter 70.105DRCW, to recover costs incurred from an alleged rem...

Wright v. Lyft, Inc. (Majority)  
Date: December 14, 2017
Docket Number: 94162-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Kenneth Wright received an unsolicited text message that appeared to come from an acquaintance inviting him to download Lyft's cellphone application. Wright sued as a putative class member. The federal district court has...

City of Spokane v. Horton (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: December 7, 2017
Docket Number: 93788-5

Justia Opinion Summary: In February 2015, the city of Spokane (City) enacted an ordinance that granted a local property tax exemption to senior citizens and disabled veterans. Relying on a letter by the Washington Department of Revenue (DOR), t...

Washington v. Wences (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: November 30, 2017
Docket Number: 93605-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Following a search of Marco Wences' car in 2003, the State charged him with possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine) with intent to manufacture or deliver. The State also alleged that Wences was armed with...

Washington v. Joseph (Majority)  
Date: November 22, 2017
Docket Number: 93710-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Anthony Joseph was convicted of second degree criminal trespass as a lesser included offense of second degree vehicle prowling. He challenged his conviction on the ground that unlawful entry into a vehicle is...

Washington v. Smith (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: November 22, 2017
Docket Number: 93923-3

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue this case presented for the Washington Supreme Court’s review centered on application of RCW 9.73.030 of the Washington privacy act to an inadvertent recording on a cell phone voice mail of a domestic violence...

Washington v. Chelan County Dist. Court (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: November 16, 2017
Docket Number: 93098-8

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2015, a Chelan County deputy sheriff arrested Robert Bowie for driving while under the influence (DUI). Bowie received appropriate RCW 46.20.308 warnings about his right to refuse a breath test, signed the implied con...

Pilloud v. King County Republican Cent. Comm. (Majority)  
Date: November 9, 2017
Docket Number: 93786-9

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue before the Washington Supreme Court was whether the superior court erred in ruling that 29A.80.061 was invalid under the First Amendment. Also at issue was whether the bill containing the statute violated the si...

Zhu v. N. Cent. Educ. Serv. District (Majority)  
Date: November 9, 2017
Docket Number: 94209-9

Justia Opinion Summary: A question of Washington law was certified to the Washington Supreme Court on whether prospective employers are free to engage in retaliatory discrimination in the hiring process. Waterville School District No. 209 hired...

Washington v. Cruz (Majority)  
Date: November 2, 2017
Docket Number: 93732-0

Justia Opinion Summary: An officer from the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife saw respondent Eric Cruz illegally "snag" a salmon in the Similkameen River. McCormick arrested Cruz for this misdemeanor fishing violation. The officer handcu...

In re Recall of Pepper (Majority)  
Date: October 26, 2017
Docket Number: 94574-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Robbin Taylor filed a statement of charges seeking recall of Black Diamond City council member Patricia Pepper. In November 2015, Pepper defeated opponent Ron Taylor (husband of Robbin Taylor) in an election for Black Di...

In re Recall of Riddle (Majority)  
Date: October 26, 2017
Docket Number: 94788-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Yakima County Clerk Janelle Riddle appealed a trial court's ruling that five out of the six recall charges filed against her were factually and legally sufficient. Riddle was elected on in late 2014, defeating incumbent...

Mikkelsen v. Pub. Util. Dist. No. 1 of Kittitas County (Majority)  
Date: October 19, 2017
Docket Number: 93731-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The Public Utility District No. 1 of Kittitas County (district) fired Kim Mikkelsen after 27 years of service. Mikkelsen sued the district, alleging that, among other things, her dismissal violated the Washington Law Aga...

Washington v. Salgado-Mendoza (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: October 12, 2017
Docket Number: 93293-0

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this appeal was whether the trial court in Ascencion Salgado-Mendoza's trial for driving under the influence abused its discretion by refusing to suppress the testimony of the State's toxicology witness. The...

Killian v. Seattle Pub. Schs. (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: October 12, 2017
Docket Number: 93655-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Former Seattle Public Schools (SPS) employees sought reversal of a Court of Appeals decision that affirmed summary judgment in favor of their bargaining representative, the International Union of Operating Engineers Loca...

Shanghai Commercial Bank, Ltd. v. Kung Da Chang (Majority)  
Date: October 12, 2017
Docket Number: 93823-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Kung Da Chang entered into a credit facility arrangement with Shanghai Commercial Bank (SCB) between March and April 2008 by executing five agreements. Together, these five agreements enabled Chang and his father, Clark...

Washington v. Barnes (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: October 12, 2017
Docket Number: 93829-6

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2015, after attempting to steal a riding lawnmower, Joshua Barnes was arrested and charged with theft of a motor vehicle. He filed a motion to dismiss, claiming that a riding lawnmower was not a "motor vehicle" under...

Blomstrom v. Tripp (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: October 5, 2017
Docket Number: 91642-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Three cases were consolidated for review by the Washington Supreme Court. Each petitioner-defendant was arrested for driving under the influence (DUI). Two had high blood alcohol concentrations (BAC) but no previous DUI...

In re Pers. Restraint of Canha (Majority)  
Date: September 28, 2017
Docket Number: 94175-1

Justia Opinion Summary: A jury found Steven Canha guilty of two counts of assault in the second degree and two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm in the first degree. At the sentencing hearing, the superior court calculated Canha's offe...

Arden v. Forsberg & Umlauf, PS (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: September 14, 2017
Docket Number: 93207-7

Justia Opinion Summary: This case presented for the Washington Supreme Court's review claims of breaches of fiduciary duty and legal malpractice against lawyers hired to defend insureds in a civil action where the insurance company provided the...

Washington v. Gray (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: September 14, 2017
Docket Number: 93609-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Eric Gray electronically sent an unsolicited picture of his penis to an adult woman when he was seventeen years old. The woman notified police; police found and charged petitioner with one count of second degr...

Carrera v. Olmstead (Majority)  
Date: September 7, 2017
Docket Number: 93799-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Basilio Carrera lost his right hand in a workplace accident. The issue this accident presented for the Washington Supreme Court’s review was whether the Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) could pursue a third party...

In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against Fossedal (Majority)
Date: August 17, 2017
Docket Number: 201,600-6
Washington v. Cardenas-Flores (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: August 17, 2017
Docket Number: 93385-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Zaida Yesenia Cardenas-Flores did not make a corpus delicti objection at trial, raising it for the first time on appeal. Cardenas-Flores and Carlos Austin brought their infant son, C.A., to the emergency room. They repor...

In re Det. of Belcher (Majority)  
Date: August 17, 2017
Docket Number: 93900-4

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2011, when he was 26 years old, Troy Belcher was civilly committed as a sexually violent predator. In 2015, the superior court ordered that he continue to be indefinitely committed, based on two sexually violent crime...

Watson v. City of Seattle (Majority)  
Date: August 10, 2017
Docket Number: 93723-1

Justia Opinion Summary: This case centered on Seattle Ordinance 124833 (Ordinance), which imposed a "Firearms and Ammunition Tax" on each firearm and round of ammunition sold within the city limits. Its stated purpose was to raise revenue for p...

Street v. Weyerhaeuser Co. (Majority)  
Date: August 10, 2017
Docket Number: 93984-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Weyerhaeuser Company challenged an award of industrial insurance benefits to its former employee, Roger Street, for his low back condition, a claimed occupational disease. Weyerhaeuser argued that a worker must present e...

Washington v. Bigsby (Majority)  
Date: August 10, 2017
Docket Number: 93987-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Brandon Bigsby failed to undergo a chemical dependency evaluation after he was released from jail on community custody as ordered by the trial court. Both the Department of Corrections and the trial court sanctioned him...

In re Det. of Marcum (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: August 3, 2017
Docket Number: 92501-1

Justia Opinion Summary: John Marcum was civilly committed as an SVP for more than 15 years. He had been convicted of one count of indecent liberties against a child under the age of 14 and two counts of first degree child molestation. While he...

Washington v. McFarland (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 3, 2017
Docket Number: 92947-5

Justia Opinion Summary: A jury convicted Cecily McFarland of first degree burglary, ten counts of theft of a firearm, and three counts of unlawful possession of a firearm. The trial court imposed standard range sentences on each count and, rely...

Selene RMOF II Reo Acquisitions II, LLC v. Ward (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 3, 2017
Docket Number: 92967-0

Justia Opinion Summary: This case involved the transfer of property that once belonged to Vanessa Ward, now in possession of Selene RMOF II REO Acquisitions II LLC (“Selene”), which acquired the property in 2012 from a purchaser at a nonjudicia...

Schibel v. Eymann (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 3, 2017
Docket Number: 93214-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Former clients sued their attorneys for legal malpractice based, in part, on the attorneys' withdrawal from a prior ease. But the attorneys obtained that withdrawal by court order. In the original case, the former client...

Washington v. Olsen (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 3, 2017
Docket Number: 93315-4

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was whether a court could require a probationer convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) to submit to random urinalysis testing (UAs) for controlled substances. In 2014, Brittanie Olsen pleade...

Bus. Servs. of Am. II, Inc. v. Wafertech, LLC (Majority)  
Date: July 27, 2017
Docket Number: 94088-6

Justia Opinion Summary: The parties have waged protracted litigation, yet only recently did defendant WaferTech LLC assert that the named plaintiff lacked capacity to sue. Specifically, WaferTech argued that there was no such corporate entity a...

Washington v. Lile (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: July 20, 2017
Docket Number: 93035-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Travis Lile appealed his convictions for multiple assaults and resisting arrest. A jury found beyond a reasonable doubt that Lile, acting as the aggressor, attacked Christopher Rowles and Amanda Millman and then struck B...

Washington v. Weyand (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: July 20, 2017
Docket Number: 93377-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The trial court denied Wesley Weyand's motion to suppress evidence obtained during a Terry stop. In this case, the Washington Supreme Court held that the facts known to the police did not justify stopping Weyand and the...

Univ. of Wash. v. City of Seattle (Majority)  
Date: July 20, 2017
Docket Number: 94232-3

Justia Opinion Summary: The University of Washington (UW) owned property in City of Seattle but contended the City’s “Landmark Preservation Ordinance” (LPO) could not apply to any of the University’s property. UW wanted to demolish a building o...

Washington v. Johnson (Majority)  
Date: July 13, 2017
Docket Number: 93453-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner John Johnson challenged the sufficiency of the evidence in an appeal of conviction for second-degree theft of an access device. The outcome turned on the Washington Supreme Court’s determination of whether Mus...

King County v. Vinci Constr. Grands Projets (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: July 6, 2017
Docket Number: 92744-8

Justia Opinion Summary: This case presented for the Washington Supreme Court's review an award of attorney fees against five surety companies following a jury trial for breach of contract in a public works project. The parties litigated the iss...

Smelser v. Paul (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: July 6, 2017
Docket Number: 93076-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Two-year-old Derrick Smelser was run over while playing in his yard by a car driven by the defendant, Jeanne Paul. At trial, Paul was allowed to assert an affirmative defense that the child's father was partially at faul...

Swank v. Valley Christian School (Majority)  
Date: July 6, 2017
Docket Number: 93282-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue presented by this case was whether Washington's Zackery Lystedt Law (Lystedt law), RCW 28A.600.190, gave rise to an implied cause of action. The Lystedt law's purpose was to reduce the risk of further injury or...

Chelan Basin Conservancy v. GBI Holding Co. (Majority)  
Date: July 6, 2017
Docket Number: 93381-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Chelan Basin Conservancy (Conservancy) sought the removal of six acres of fill material that respondent GBI Holding Co. added to its property in 1961 to keep the formerly dry property permanently above the art...

City of Seattle v. Erickson (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: July 6, 2017
Docket Number: 93408-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Trial courts must engage in a full Batson analysis when a peremptory strike of a juror is the only member of a cognizable racial group. In 2013, Petitioner Matthew Erickson, a black man, was charged in Seattle Municipal...

Brady v. Autozone Stores, Inc. (Majority)  
Date: June 29, 2017
Docket Number: 93564-5

Justia Opinion Summary: The federal district court has asked the Washington Supreme Court to answer two certified questions concerning how a Washington labor regulation addressing meal breaks should be applied. A wage dispute was pending at the...

Rodriguez v. Zavala (Majority)  
Date: June 29, 2017
Docket Number: 93645-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Esmeralda Rodriguez petitioned for protection on behalf of her two-year-old son, arguing that Luis Zavala's repeated threats against her son constituted "domestic violence" under the plain language of RCW 26.50.010(3), a...

City of Sunnyside v. Gonzalez (Majority)  
Date: June 29, 2017
Docket Number: 93907-1

Justia Opinion Summary: While driving in Sunnyside, Washington, petitioner Andreas Gonzalez was stopped for speeding by Sergeant Scott Bailey. Gonzalez was driving a BMW with California license plates. Although Gonzalez had a Washington driver'...

In re Pers. Restraint of Lui (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: June 22, 2017
Docket Number: 92816-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Sione Lui challenged his conviction for the second degree murder of his fiancee, Elaina Boussiacos. He sought a new trial based on allegations of ineffective assistance of counsel, prosecutorial misconduct, Br...

Washington v. Lee (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: June 15, 2017
Docket Number: 92475-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Limiting the scope of that cross-examination was within the court's discretion. Donald Lee was convicted on two counts of third degree rape of a child. The trial court permitted Lee to ask J.W. if she had made a false ac...

Washington v. Whitlock (Majority)  
Date: June 15, 2017
Docket Number: 93685-4

Justia Opinion Summary: In Washington v. Smith, 334 P.3d 1049 (2014), the Washington Supreme Court held that the constitutional right to an open courtroom did not require trial courts to invite the public to attend sidebars. examples of sidebar...

Noll v. Amer. Biltrite Inc. (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: June 8, 2017
Docket Number: 91998-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Without alleging a defendant purposefully availed itself of the privilege of doing business in Washington, thus invoking the benefits and protections of Washington laws, exercising jurisdiction would not comport with due...

Columbia Riverkeeper v. Port of Vancouver USA (Majority)  
Date: June 8, 2017
Docket Number: 92455-4

Justia Opinion Summary: An exception to the open meeting mandate of the Washington's Open Public Meetings Act (OPMA) permits governing bodies to enter executive session "[t]o consider the minimum price at which real estate will be offered for s...

Washington v. Estes (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: June 8, 2017
Docket Number: 93143-7

Justia Opinion Summary: During an investigatory stop of a vehicle, a traffic violator can be temporarily detained until the legitimate investigative purposes of the traffic stop have been completed. Michael Phelps appealed a criminal judgment e...

In re Pers. Restraint of Davis (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: May 18, 2017
Docket Number: 89590-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Cecil Davis was sentenced to death for brutally murdering Yoshiko Couch. Davis raped, robbed, and killed 65-year-old Couch in her home in 1997. His direct appeal was unsuccessful. He challenged his death sentence in a pe...

In re Pers. Restraint of Rhem (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 11, 2017
Docket Number: 92698-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue central to this appeal was whether Michael Rhem adequately raised an ineffective assistance of appellate counsel claim by including in his pro se reply brief, "Rhem would also request that this Court consider s...

Washington v. Armstrong (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 11, 2017
Docket Number: 93119-4

Justia Opinion Summary: In alternative means cases where substantial evidence supported both alternatives submitted to the jury, jury unanimity as to the means is not required. In this case, Dennis Armstrong petitioned the Washington Supreme Co...

Washington v. Arredondo (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 4, 2017
Docket Number: 92389-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Fabian Arredondo appealed his accomplice liability convictions of one count of second degree murder and three counts of first degree assault. A jury found beyond a reasonable doubt that Arredondo, a gang member, drove a...

Thorpe v. Inslee (Majority)  
Date: May 4, 2017
Docket Number: 92912-2

Justia Opinion Summary: This case presented a question of whether the then-current collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between the State of Washington and Services Employees International Union Healthcare 775NW (SEIU) included a union securit...

Washington v. Bluford (Majority)  
Date: May 4, 2017
Docket Number: 93668-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The Washington Supreme Court reaffirmed precedent that a trial court must consider whether such joinder will result in undue prejudice to the defendant. If it will, joinder is not permissible. The State charged Charles B...

Xia v. Probuilders Specialty Ins. Co. (Majority, Dissent and Concurrence/Dissent)  
Date: April 27, 2017
Docket Number: 92436-8

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was the applicability of a broad, absolute insurance pollution exclusion clause to a claim based on negligent installation of a hot water heater that led to the release of toxic levels of carbon mon...

Wash. Trucking Ass'ns v. Emp't Sec. Dep't (Majority)  
Date: April 27, 2017
Docket Number: 93079-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The principal issue in this case was whether taxpayers could bring federal or state tort claims to challenge tax assessments, or instead must rely on the normal state tax appeals process. The taxpayers here are trucking...

Frausto v. Yakima HMA, LLC (Majority)  
Date: April 27, 2017
Docket Number: 93312-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The sole issue in this case was whether advanced registered nurse practitioners (ARNPs) were per se disqualified from testifying on proximate cause in a medical negligence case. The Washington Supreme Court held that ARN...

Washington v. Woodlyn (Majority)  
Date: April 13, 2017
Docket Number: 91577-6

Justia Opinion Summary: David Woodlyn cashed a series of blank checks written by Dora Kjellerson, an elderly woman suffering from dementia. The State charged Woodlyn with theft in the second degree, an alternative means crime. The jury's "to co...

In re Marriage of Black (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: April 6, 2017
Docket Number: 92994-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Rachelle and Charles Black were married for nearly 20 years and had three sons. They raised their children in a conservative Christian church and sent them to private, Christian schools. In 2011, Rachelle told Charles th...

Washington v. Weatherwax (Majority)  
Date: April 6, 2017
Docket Number: 93192-5

Justia Opinion Summary: In consolidated cases, petitioners were each charged with four serious violent offenses-one count of conspiracy to commit assault (an anticipatory crime) and three substantive crimes of assault. A divided appellate panel...

Cougar Den, Inc. v. Dep't of Licensing (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: March 16, 2017
Docket Number: 92289-6

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue in this case centered on the interpretation of the "right to travel" provision Article III of the Yakama Nation Treaty of 1855, in the context of importing fuel into Washington State. The Washington State Depar...

Columbia Riverkeeper v. Port of Vancouver USA (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: March 16, 2017
Docket Number: 92335-3

Justia Opinion Summary: This case stemmed from a dispute over the regulatory schemes of the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) and the energy facilities site locations act (EFSLA), and how those schemes applied to a lease agreement between r...

Tabingo v. Am. Triumph LLC (Majority)  
Date: March 9, 2017
Docket Number: 92913-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Allan Tabingo was seriously injured while working aboard a fishing trawler owned and operated by American Seafoods Company LLC and American Triumph LLC (collectively American Seafoods). Tabingo alleged the lever used to...

Washington v. Houston-Sconiers (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: March 2, 2017
Docket Number: 92605-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The defendants in this case, Zyion Houston-Sconiers and Treson Roberts, were children. On Halloween night in 2012, they were 17 and 16 years old, respectively. They robbed mainly other groups of children, and they netted...

In re Marriage of Zandi (Majority)  
Date: February 23, 2017
Docket Number: 92296-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Victor and Deanna Zandi's were divorced in 2009. Their dependent daughter, T.Z., incurred approximately $13,000 in medical bills when she had a kidney stone removed while traveling outside her medical insurer’s, Kaiser...

In re Disciplinary Proceedings Against Conteh (Majority)
Date: February 16, 2017
Docket Number: 201,448-8
Washington v. Arlene's Flowers, Inc. (Majority)  
Date: February 16, 2017
Docket Number: 91615-2

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2004, respondents Robert Ingersoll and Curt Freed began a committed, romantic relationship. In 2012, the Washington legislature passed Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 6239, which recognized equal civil marriage right...

Lundgren v. Upper Skagit Indian Tribe (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 16, 2017
Docket Number: 91622-5

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue this case presented for the Supreme Court’s review was whether the Upper Skagit Indian Tribe's (Tribe) assertion of sovereign immunity requires dismissal of an in rem adverse possession action to quiet title to...

Peralta v. Washington (Majority)  
Date: February 16, 2017
Docket Number: 92675-1

Justia Opinion Summary: One evening, plaintiff Deborah Peralta was drinking beer with a neighbor in a downtown Vancouver tavern. After an argument at the party, Peralta left on foot, became lost, and called her brother Jorge Peralta. She told h...

Estate of Ackerley v. Dep't of Revenue (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 16, 2017
Docket Number: 92791-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Barry Ackerley died in 2011. In 2008 and 2010, Ackerley made substantial gifts of money. On these inter vivos gifts, Ackerley paid the required federal gift taxes, which amounted to over $5.5 million. Upon his death, Ack...

Spivey v. City of Bellevue (Majority)  
Date: February 9, 2017
Docket Number: 91680-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Consolidated cases involved two city of Bellevue (City) firefighters who were diagnosed with malignant melanoma and filed claims for workers' compensation benefits. In both cases, the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeal...

Taylor v. Intuitive Surgical Inc. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 9, 2017
Docket Number: 92210-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, a manufacturer sold a surgical device to a hospital, which credentialed some of its physicians to perform surgery with the device. The manufacturer's warnings regarding that device were at the heart of this...

Wilcox v. Basehore (Majority)  
Date: February 9, 2017
Docket Number: 92362-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Dean Wilcox fell 50 feet through an open catwalk hatch onto a concrete floor. Having sustained severe injuries, he sued the on-site safety planner, Steven Basehore, for negligent planning causing the fall; Wil...

Dunnington v. Virginia Mason Med. Ctr. (Majority)  
Date: February 2, 2017
Docket Number: 91374-9

Justia Opinion Summary: This case involved a medical malpractice action for a lost chance of a better outcome. The parties jointly sought direct discretionary review under RAP 2.3(b)(4), challenging two pretrial rulings: (1) whether a court sho...

Washington v. Clark (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 2, 2017
Docket Number: 92021-4

Justia Opinion Summary: At his trial for premeditated first degree murder, petitioner Anthony Clark sought to introduce expert testimony regarding his intellectual deficits. Clark asserted this testimony would be relevant to contesting the Stat...

Perez-Crisantos v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co. (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: February 2, 2017
Docket Number: 92267-5

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2007, the legislature passed, and the voters ratified, the Insurance Fair Conduct Act (IFCA), RCW 48.30.015. IFCA gave insureds a new cause of action against insurers who unreasonably deny coverage or benefits. IFCA a...

Allen v. Dameron (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: February 2, 2017
Docket Number: 93056-2

Justia Opinion Summary: The United States District Court for the Western District of Washington certified two questions to the Washington Supreme Court about the application of RCW 49.52.050, the wage rebate act (WRA), in circumstances of chapt...

In re Parental Rights to K.J.B. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: January 26, 2017
Docket Number: 91921-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner J.B. argued that his parental rights with respect to his biological child K.J.B. could not be terminated without express written findings of fact on “incarcerated parent factors” from the 2013 amendment of RCW...

Estate of Becker v. Forward Tech. Indus., Inc. (Majority)  
Date: January 26, 2017
Docket Number: 92972-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Virgil Becker, a retired doctor, was killed in a plane crash. His estate claimed that a faulty carburetor caused the crash. Forward Technology Industries Inc. (FTI) built a component for that carburetor. The Estate broug...

In re Pers. Restraint of Bell (Majority)  
Date: January 19, 2017
Docket Number: 92679-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Reginald Bell was convicted in 2009 of possession of cocaine with intent to deliver and bail jumping. His judgment and sentence became final on direct appeal in 2012. In October 2015, Bell filed a personal restraint peti...

In re Custody of L.M.S. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: January 19, 2017
Docket Number: 92897-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Faualuga and Billie Siufanua sought custody of L.M.S., their granddaughter. The grandparents contended that placing L.M.S. with Tony Fuga, her biological father, would cause actual detriment because the father has been m...

Washington v. Ortiz-Abrego (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 92334-5

Justia Opinion Summary: A jury found Alexander Ortiz-Abrego guilty on charges of child rape. The trial court held a contested competency hearing. The court determined that Ortiz-Abrego was incompetent during his trial, though various accommodat...

Washington v. Rodriguez Ramos (Majority)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 92454-6

Justia Opinion Summary: As a juvenile homicide offender facing a de facto life-without-parole sentence, petitioner Joel Rodriguez Ramos was entitled to a "Miller" hearing, just as a juvenile homicide offender facing a literal life-without-parol...

Quinault Indian Nation v. City of Hoquiam (Majority)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 92552-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Two companies applied for permits to expand their oil terminals on Grays Harbor. The issue here this case presented was whether the Ocean Resources Management Act (ORMA), applied to these expansion projects. The Shorelin...

Entila v. Cook (Majority)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 92581-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Gerald Cook and Francisco Entila were both employees of the Boeing Company. Early in the morning on February 18, 2010, Cook finished work and walked to his vehicle in an employee parking lot. He was driving his personal...

Aiken v. Aiken (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 92631-0

Justia Opinion Summary: A mother sought an emergency protection order to keep her soon-to-be ex-husband away from her and their children because, she alleged, he had abused them. The father denied the allegations and sought to cross-examine one...

Fortgang v. Woodland Park Zoo (Majority)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 92846-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Alyne Fortgang filed a request for documents concerning the elephants at the Woodland Park Zoo (Zoo). She filed a request under the Public Records Act (PRA), which required every government "agency" to make re...

Washington v. Solis-Diaz (Majority)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 93279-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Guadalupe Solis-Diaz Jr. seeks review of a Court of Appeals decision vacating his sentence a second time and remanding for resentencing but declining to disqualify the sentencing judge. In 2007, 16-year-old Solis-Diaz wa...

In re Recall of Boldt (Majority)  
Date: January 12, 2017
Docket Number: 93522-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Clark County Councilor Thomas Mielke filed recall charges essentially alleging that three fellow council members improperly held a vote in executive session, improperly designated The Columbian as the newspaper of record...

Washington v. Barbee (Majority)  
Date: January 5, 2017
Docket Number: 92771-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Shacon Barbee was a pimp that made money from prostitutes working under his supervision. The State charged Barbee with two counts of promoting sexual abuse of a minor (SE), one count of first degree promoting prostitutio...

The opinions published on Justia State Caselaw are sourced from individual state court sites. These court opinions may not be the official published versions, and you should check your local court rules before citing to them. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site, or the information linked to on the state site.