Mueller v. St. Louis Pub. Serv. Co., No. 40448.

CourtMissouri Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtLeedy
Citation214 S.W.2d 1
Docket NumberNo. 40448.
Decision Date13 September 1948
PartiesISABELLA MUELLER, Appellant, v. ST. LOUIS PUBLIC SERVICE COMPANY, a Corporation, Respondent.
214 S.W.2d 1
ISABELLA MUELLER, Appellant,
v.
ST. LOUIS PUBLIC SERVICE COMPANY, a Corporation, Respondent.
No. 40448.
Supreme Court of Missouri.
Division Two, September 13, 1948.
Motion to Modify Opinion Sustained, October 11, 1948.
Motion for Rehearing or to Transfer to Banc Overruled, October 11, 1948.

[214 S.W.2d 2]

Appeal from Circuit Court of City of St. Louis.Hon. Charles B. Williams, Judge.

REVERSED AND REMANDED (with directions).

Mark D. Eagleton, Mortimer A. Rosecan, and Roberts P. Elam for appellant.

(1) The plaintiff's evidence, having shown that she was injured while a passenger on one of defendant carrier's motor busses and while in the act of alighting therefrom, when the exit door of the bus closed and caught her leg and foot and the bus immediately thereafter started in motion and moved, established a set of circumstances to which the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur was peculiarly applicable, and which met all the tests for the application of that doctrine. McPherson v. Hudson & M.R. Co., 100 N.J.L. 262, 127 Atl. 23, opinion modified 101 N.J.L. 410, 128 Atl. 231; Craft v. Boston Elevated R. Co., 211 Mass. 374, 97 N.E. 610; Fitzgerald v. Boston Elevated R. Co., 274 Mass. 287, 174 N.E. 491; Murray v. Murray, 264 App. Div. 134, 34 N.Y.S. (2d) 629; Zimmerman v. Kansas City Pub. Serv. Co., 226 Mo. App. 369, 41 S.W. (2d) 579; Bell v. Central Electric Ry. Co., 125 Mo. App. 660, 103 S.W. 144; 3 Shearman & Redfield on Negligence, Rev. Ed., pp. 1311-1312, sec. 514; 3 Shearman & Redfield on Negligence, Rev. Ed., pp. 1341-1343, sec. 523; San Juan L. & P. Co. v. Requena, 224 U.S. 89, 32 S. Ct. 399, 56 L. Ed. 680; Pandjiris v. Oliver Cadillac Co., 339 Mo. 711, 98 S.W. (2d) 969; Mayne v. Kansas City Rys. Co., 287 Mo. 235, 229 S.W. 386; McCloskey v. Koplar, 329 Mo. 527, 46 S.W. (2d) 557; Powell v. St. Joseph Ry., L., H. & P. Co., 336 Mo. 1016, 81 S.W. (2d) 957; Lober v. Kansas City, 74 S.W. (2d) 815; Evans v. Mo. Pac. R. Co., 342 Mo. 420, 116 S.W. (2d) 8; Jesionowski v. Boston & M.R. Co., 329 U.S. 452, 67 S. Ct. 401. (2) The testimony of plaintiff, which was all of her evidence relating to the closing of the bus exit door upon her leg and foot, and to the starting of the bus, did not establish specific negligence on the part of defendant's bus operator. Siegel v. M.-K.-T.R. Co., 342 Mo. 1130, 119 S.W. (2d) 376; Riggs v. Metropolitan Street R. Co., 216 Mo. 304, 115 S.W. 969; Clark v. Atchison & Eastern Bridge Co., 333 Mo. 721, 62 S.W. (2d) 1079.

Mattingly, Boas & Richards and Lloyd E. Boas for respondent.

(1) The evidence failed to disclose any unusual occurrence justifying the application of the res ipsa loquitur doctrine. Harke v. Haase, 335 Mo. 1104, 75 S.W. (2d) 1001; Gibbs v. General Motors Corp., 166 S.W. (2d) 575, 350 Mo. 431; Gordon v. Muehling Pkg. Co., 328 Mo. 123, 40 S.W. (2d) 693; Palmer v. Brooks, 169 S.W. (2d) 906, 350 Mo. 1055; Charlton v. Lovelace, 173 S.W. (2d) 13, 351 Mo. 364; Grindstag v. J. Goldberg & Sons Structural Steel Co., 328 Mo. 72, 40 S.W. (2d) 702. (2) It is the character of the accident and not the relationship of the parties that determines the applicability of the res ipsa loquitur doctrine. Gordon v. Muehling Pkg. Co., supra; Noce v. St. Louis-S.F. Ry. Co., 85 S.W. (2d) 637, 337 Mo. 689; Hart v. Emery, Bird, Thayer D.G. Co., 118 S.W. (2d) 509, 233 Mo. App. 312. Plaintiff's evidence established specific negligence by showing the particular servant and the act that caused her injury and prejudicial error was committed in submitting a case on the res ipsa loquitur doctrine. Hoeller v. St. Louis Pub. Serv. Co., 199 S.W. (2d) 7; Grimes v. Red Line Service, Inc., 337 Mo. 743, 85 S.W. (2d) 767; Hughes v. E. St. Louis City Lines, 194 S.W. (2d) 440; Berry v. K.C. Pub. Serv. Co., 121 S.W. (2d) 825, 343 Mo. 474. (4) Appellant was bound by her testimony showing the particular, individual and specific cause of her injury and the trial court properly concluded that it was reversible error to permit her to submit on the res ipsa loquitur doctrine. Conduitt v. Trenton Gas & Elec. Co., 31 S.W. (2d) 21, 326 Mo. 133; Sanders v. City of Carthage, 51 S.W. (2d) 529, 330 Mo. 844; Hoeller v. St. Louis Pub. Serv. Co., supra; Powell v. St. Joseph Ry., L.H. & Power Co., supra. (5) The trial court properly sustained respondent's motion for a new trial on assignment No. XVIII. Powell v. St. Joseph Ry., L., H. & Power Co., 81 S.W. (2d) 959, 336 Mo. 1016; Rose v. St. Louis Pub. Serv. Co., 205 S.W. (2d) 559.

LEEDY, J.


Isabella Mueller instituted this action against St. Louis Public Service Company for $30,000.00 damages on account...

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11 practice notes
  • Marquardt v. Kansas City Southern Ry. Co., No. 48472
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • 14 Mayo 1962
    ...negligent acts or omissions which were the proximate cause of the occurrence. Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1, 3; Palmer v. Brooks, 350 Mo. 1055, 169 S.W.2d 906, 909; Gibbs v. General Motors Corp., 350 Mo. 431, 166 S.W.2d 575, 579; Harke v. Haase, 335 Mo. ......
  • McCaffery v. St. Louis Public Service Co., No. 42737
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • 13 Octubre 1952
    ...by plaintiff: Belding v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 491, 215 S.W.2d 506; Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1; Moehle v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 229 S.W.2d 285; Hale v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 238 S.W.2d 876; Whitaker v.......
  • Williams v. St. Louis Public Service Co., No. 28189
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • 15 Enero 1952
    ...upon Belding v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 491, 215 Page 663 S.W.2d 506; Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1; Moehle v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 229 S.W.2d 285; and Hale v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 238 S.W.2d 876. In each......
  • Williams v. St. Louis Public Service Co., No. 43123
    • United States
    • Missouri Supreme Court
    • 10 Noviembre 1952
    ...Co., supra, 223 S.W.2d 446, 450; McCaffery v. St. Louis Public Service Co., supra; Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1, 2. It remained for the jury, if it so found, to infer that the jerk was caused by some negligence of defendant in operation or in Appellant ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
11 cases
  • Marquardt v. Kansas City Southern Ry. Co., No. 48472
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • 14 Mayo 1962
    ...negligent acts or omissions which were the proximate cause of the occurrence. Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1, 3; Palmer v. Brooks, 350 Mo. 1055, 169 S.W.2d 906, 909; Gibbs v. General Motors Corp., 350 Mo. 431, 166 S.W.2d 575, 579; Harke v. Haase, 335 Mo. ......
  • McCaffery v. St. Louis Public Service Co., No. 42737
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • 13 Octubre 1952
    ...by plaintiff: Belding v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 491, 215 S.W.2d 506; Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1; Moehle v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 229 S.W.2d 285; Hale v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 238 S.W.2d 876; Whitaker v.......
  • Williams v. St. Louis Public Service Co., No. 28189
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • 15 Enero 1952
    ...upon Belding v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 491, 215 Page 663 S.W.2d 506; Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1; Moehle v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 229 S.W.2d 285; and Hale v. St. Louis Public Service Co., Mo.App., 238 S.W.2d 876. In each......
  • Williams v. St. Louis Public Service Co., No. 43123
    • United States
    • Missouri Supreme Court
    • 10 Noviembre 1952
    ...Co., supra, 223 S.W.2d 446, 450; McCaffery v. St. Louis Public Service Co., supra; Mueller v. St. Louis Public Service Co., 358 Mo. 247, 214 S.W.2d 1, 2. It remained for the jury, if it so found, to infer that the jerk was caused by some negligence of defendant in operation or in Appellant ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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