Bell v. LeSlie

CourtCourt of Appeal of Missouri (US)
Writing for the CourtHALL
Citation24 Mo.App. 661
PartiesB. K. BELL, Respondent, v. WILLIAM LESLIE, Appellant.
Decision Date08 February 1887

24 Mo.App. 661

B. K. BELL, Respondent,
v.
WILLIAM LESLIE, Appellant.

Kansas City Court of Appeals, Missouri.

Feb. 8, 1887.


APPEAL from Chariton Circuit Court, HON. C. HAMMOND, Special Judge.

Reversed.

Statement of case by the court.

This is an action to recover damages for injuries inflicted on plaintiff's race horse, “Jim Keyte,” by a race horse, “Mollie Hubbard,” the property of defendant, on the race track at the fair ground at Keytesville. The petition was in two counts. The first count alleged that the defendant was, on October 4, 1883, the owner and in possession of the mare, “Mollie Hubbard”; that she “was of an ungovernable, vicious, and dangerous disposition, and was in the habit of running away,” all of which

[24 Mo.App. 662]

facts the defendant well knew; “that plaintiff had properly and rightfully caused his horse, ‘Jim Keyte,’ to be on the said track on said day; that while said horse was on said track, the defendant knowing the dangerous disposition of his said mare, wrongfully caused or suffered his servants and employes, having said mare in charge, to take her on the track where the plaintiff's horse was; that said mare, in accordance with her said disposition as known to defendant, immediately became vicious and unruly, and ran into and against plaintiff's horse at full speed, striking said horse on the hind leg, thereby breaking the same,” etc.

The second count was the same as the first count, with the exception, that the second count alleged “that the rider in charge of said mare for defendant, by reason of negligence and want of ordinary care on his, the rider's part, caused or permitted defendant's mare to run into and against plaintiff's horse,” etc.

The answer was a general denial. The evidence showed that the plaintiff's horse was injured by being run into by the defendant's mare while they were both rightfully on the race track, mentioned in the petition. As to what caused the defendant's mare to run only two witnesses testified. The plaintiff testified: “As the mare came around, and about opposite the gate where the horses are taken in upon the track, Meyers stopped her and seemed to be tying a knot in the bridle rein, when she suddenly took a start at great speed around toward the ticket office and in the direction of my horse.” Meyers, the rider of the mare, testified: “I had put the mare around the track once in a walk, with ‘Roan Charlie.’ Just as we got to the gate at the south end of the track where the stock is brought upon the track, a dog took after a loose mule, which started to run up behind us, and some one hallooed. We were near the starting post at the time, and the mare started to run.”

As to the manner in which the collision took place

[24 Mo.App. 663]

the same two witnesses alone testified. The plaintiff said, after having made statement already quoted: “He” (Meyers), “sat very low on the mare, nearly laying down, and sawed the bit in her mouth as if he did not care a cent what she did. She ran against my horse and broke its leg, and I killed him.” Meyers, after stating that the mare started to run, said: “It was a down grade in front of me. I hallooed, ‘Ho!’ to the mare, and begun sawing the bit in her mouth to stop her. There were a dozen horses on the track, some horses near the ticket stand ahead of me, and I called out, ‘clear the track!’ Bell's horse was some seventy-five yards further up the track, and his rider, instead of going straight ahead on the track, as he should, he turned him to the right, with his head towards the fence, which brought his rump square into the track and across it. I tried to miss his horse, but the mare's right shoulder hit his rump and knocked him over, she nearly falling, too.”

The defendant was the owner of the mare. The only witnesses who testified as to who had the possession and control of the mare at the time of the accident were Meyers, the rider, and the defendant. Meyers testified: “I was exercising, training and managing the mare, ‘Mollie Hubbard,’ at the time, for Jot Creson, of Randolph county.” The defendant said: “About three or four months before this time I had let Mr. Jot Creson have ‘Mollie Hubbard,’ for her racing qualities, till the fall fairs were over. He had my permission to use the mare in all respects as if she had belonged to him. I had no control of her whatever. Creson paid for her keeping, training, and transportation. I gave him the privilege, and authorized him to take her when and use her as he pleased. At the date of the injury to Bell's horse she was in Creson's possession and under his control and management.”

As to the defendant's mare being vicious, the evidence was as follows:

[24 Mo.App. 664]

The plaintiff testified: “I know ‘Mollie Hubbard;’ had seen her on the track. From what I had seen of her she was unruly.” James Guthridge, the only other witness for the plaintiff, testified: “Have seen ‘Mollie Hubbard’ run two or three races. She was ridden by a boy. There was no trouble with her except to get her started. I think she had been trained this way to get the best of the start before beginning to run.” Said witness also said, prior to the statements just quoted: “Do not know that she was vicious, or in habit of running away. She was stubborn about starting in a race; would pull back, and get the wrong way; unless she got the advantage in the start, was hard to start.” The defendant stated: “She was not vicious or dangerous; was perfectly gentle; my boys ride her, and my wife drives her; had not heard of her running away before the accident to plaintiff's horse. I had known her six or eight years. In starting in a race, she would refuse to go, would pull back or go the wrong way until she got the best of it.” Meyers testified: “I do not regard “Mollie Hubbard' as a dangerous or vicious mare. She had started to run with me once before, but I soon got her under control. Have seen her run a number of races. Yes, sir, I am a brother-in-law to William Leslie. The mare was not vicious, but was kind and gentle.” Robert Patterson testified: “I knew the mare, ‘Mollie Hubbard,’ and she was a gentle animal; when running she would be bad to start until she got the best of it. Saw her run several races, was generally ridden by a small boy.” There was no other evidence on this question. There was absolutely no evidence tending to show that the defendant knew that his mare had run away, or was predisposed to do so. The only evidence on that question was the statement made by Meyers at the close of his testimony: “Do not know that Leslie knew of her previous attempt a few days before to run away.”

From a judgment in favor of plaintiff, the defendant has appealed.

[24 Mo.App. 665]

SAM C. MAJOR and KINLEY & WALLACE, for the appellant.

I. The first instruction for plaintiff was wrong. It directed the jury to find a verdict for plaintiff if they found that defendant's mare was in the habit of running away, and was in...

To continue reading

Request your trial
4 practice notes
  • Alexander v. Crochett, No. 19322.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • January 30, 1939
    ...custody or control of this bull and for this reason could not be held liable for injuries inflicted by it. 3 C.J. 105; Bell v. Leslie, 24 Mo. App. 661; Schmidt v. Harkness, 3 Mo. App. 585; Reuter v. Swarthart, 196 N.W. 847, 182 Wis. 453; Durham v. Goodwin, 54 Ill. 469; Farrell v. Crawford, ......
  • Moss v. Bonne Terre Farming & Cattle Co., No. 20370.
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • November 6, 1928
    ...straying upon the highway and injuring persons. Beckett v. Beckett, 48 Mo. 396; Staeter v. McArthur, 33 Mo. App. 218; Bell v. Lesslie, 24 Mo. App. 661; 3 Corpus Juris, 89. (6) Instruction No. 2, given on behalf of plaintiff, makes the owner of a domestic animal (including mules) an insurer ......
  • Robidoux v. Busch, No. 31736
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • February 15, 1966
    ...or keeper had knowledge, either actual or constructive, of these tendencies and inclinations. Page 638 The early case of Bell v. Leslie, 24 Mo.App. 661, was an action to recover damages for injuries to plaintiff's race horse which were sustained when defendant's race horse ran away. The cou......
  • Rosales v. Benjamin Equestrian Ctr., LLC, WD 82485
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • November 26, 2019
    ...sponsor liable for injuries caused to an unwarned, inexperienced rider by a horse with a known proclivity to buck); Bell v. Leslie , 24 Mo. App. 661, 669-70 (Mo. App. K.C. Dist. 1887) (holding that a racehorse owner was not liable when plaintiff failed to show a negligent act or omission re......
4 cases
  • Alexander v. Crochett, No. 19322.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • January 30, 1939
    ...custody or control of this bull and for this reason could not be held liable for injuries inflicted by it. 3 C.J. 105; Bell v. Leslie, 24 Mo. App. 661; Schmidt v. Harkness, 3 Mo. App. 585; Reuter v. Swarthart, 196 N.W. 847, 182 Wis. 453; Durham v. Goodwin, 54 Ill. 469; Farrell v. Crawford, ......
  • Moss v. Bonne Terre Farming & Cattle Co., No. 20370.
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • November 6, 1928
    ...straying upon the highway and injuring persons. Beckett v. Beckett, 48 Mo. 396; Staeter v. McArthur, 33 Mo. App. 218; Bell v. Lesslie, 24 Mo. App. 661; 3 Corpus Juris, 89. (6) Instruction No. 2, given on behalf of plaintiff, makes the owner of a domestic animal (including mules) an insurer ......
  • Robidoux v. Busch, No. 31736
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • February 15, 1966
    ...or keeper had knowledge, either actual or constructive, of these tendencies and inclinations. Page 638 The early case of Bell v. Leslie, 24 Mo.App. 661, was an action to recover damages for injuries to plaintiff's race horse which were sustained when defendant's race horse ran away. The cou......
  • Rosales v. Benjamin Equestrian Ctr., LLC, WD 82485
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • November 26, 2019
    ...sponsor liable for injuries caused to an unwarned, inexperienced rider by a horse with a known proclivity to buck); Bell v. Leslie , 24 Mo. App. 661, 669-70 (Mo. App. K.C. Dist. 1887) (holding that a racehorse owner was not liable when plaintiff failed to show a negligent act or omission re......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT