This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 09/29/2021 at 22:13:22 (UTC).

GARY LAPLANTE VS GREGORY BLAKEMAN, ET AL.

Case Summary

On 05/04/2021 GARY LAPLANTE filed an Other lawsuit against GREGORY BLAKEMAN. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Norwalk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******0274

  • Filing Date:

    05/04/2021

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Other

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

LAPLANTE GARY

Defendants

BLAKEMAN GREGORY

BLAKEMAN JANA

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorneys

PICOZZI ED

PICOZZI EDWARD MICHAEL

Defendant Attorneys

BUFFINGTON ROGER JOSEPH

MHTAR RAUYA

 

Court Documents

Order - TRIAL SETTING ORDER

9/2/2021: Order - TRIAL SETTING ORDER

Order - TRIAL SETTING ORDER

9/2/2021: Order - TRIAL SETTING ORDER

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE)

9/2/2021: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE)

Case Management Statement

8/11/2021: Case Management Statement

Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

8/11/2021: Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

Case Management Statement

8/20/2021: Case Management Statement

Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

8/20/2021: Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

Motion to Strike (not anti-SLAPP) - without Demurrer - MOTION TO STRIKE (NOT ANTI-SLAPP) - WITHOUT DEMURRER PRAYER FOR RELIEF OF PUNITIVE DAMAGES

8/24/2021: Motion to Strike (not anti-SLAPP) - without Demurrer - MOTION TO STRIKE (NOT ANTI-SLAPP) - WITHOUT DEMURRER PRAYER FOR RELIEF OF PUNITIVE DAMAGES

Amended Complaint

8/2/2021: Amended Complaint

Declaration - DECLARATION OF RYE MHTAR, ESQ. REQUESTING EXTENSION OF 30 DAYS TO TIMELY FILE A MOTION TO STRIKE AGAINST PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT

6/7/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF RYE MHTAR, ESQ. REQUESTING EXTENSION OF 30 DAYS TO TIMELY FILE A MOTION TO STRIKE AGAINST PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT

Notice of Case Management Conference

5/6/2021: Notice of Case Management Conference

Summons - SUMMONS ON COMPLAINT

5/4/2021: Summons - SUMMONS ON COMPLAINT

Civil Case Cover Sheet

5/4/2021: Civil Case Cover Sheet

Notice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case

5/4/2021: Notice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case

Complaint

5/4/2021: Complaint

3 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 06/29/2022
  • Hearing06/29/2022 at 09:30 AM in Department F at 12720 Norwalk Blvd., Norwalk, CA 90650; Jury Trial

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  • 06/08/2022
  • Hearing06/08/2022 at 09:30 AM in Department F at 12720 Norwalk Blvd., Norwalk, CA 90650; Final Status Conference

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  • 05/09/2022
  • Hearing05/09/2022 at 08:30 AM in Department F at 12720 Norwalk Blvd., Norwalk, CA 90650; Order to Show Cause Re: regarding verification an answer has been filed to the operative complaint

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  • 05/09/2022
  • Hearing05/09/2022 at 08:30 AM in Department F at 12720 Norwalk Blvd., Norwalk, CA 90650; Mandatory Settlement Conference (MSC)

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  • 10/05/2021
  • Hearing10/05/2021 at 2:30 PM in Department C at 12720 Norwalk Blvd., Norwalk, CA 90650; Hearing on Motion to Strike (not anti-SLAPP) - without Demurrer

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  • 09/02/2021
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department F; Case Management Conference - Held

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  • 09/02/2021
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Case Management Conference)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 09/02/2021
  • DocketTrial Setting Order; Filed by Clerk

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  • 09/02/2021
  • DocketTrial Setting Order; Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/24/2021
  • DocketMotion to Strike (not anti-SLAPP) - without Demurrer (Prayer For Relief of Punitive Damages); Filed by Gregory Blakeman (Defendant); Jana Blakeman (Defendant)

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1 More Docket Entries
  • 08/20/2021
  • DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Gary LAPLANTE (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/11/2021
  • DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Gregory Blakeman (Defendant); Jana Blakeman (Defendant)

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  • 08/11/2021
  • DocketNotice of Posting of Jury Fees; Filed by Gregory Blakeman (Defendant); Jana Blakeman (Defendant)

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  • 08/02/2021
  • DocketAmended Complaint ( (1st)); Filed by Gary LAPLANTE (Plaintiff)

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  • 06/07/2021
  • DocketDeclaration (of Rye Mhtar, Esq. Requesting Extension of 30 Days To Timely File A Motion To Strike Against Plaintiff's Complaint); Filed by Jana Blakeman (Defendant)

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  • 05/06/2021
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/04/2021
  • DocketSummons (on Complaint); Filed by Gary LAPLANTE (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/04/2021
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case; Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/04/2021
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by Gary LAPLANTE (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/04/2021
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Gary LAPLANTE (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

b'

Case Number: 21NWCV00274 Hearing Date: October 5, 2021 Dept: C

LAPLANTE v. BLAKEMAN, et al.

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CASE\r\nNO.: 21NWCV00274

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HEARING:\r\n 10/5/21 @ 2:30 PM

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#6

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TENTATIVE\r\nORDER

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Defendants Gregory and\r\nJana Blakeman’s motion to strike prayer for relief of punitive damages is DENIED. Defendants are ORDERED to file and serve their\r\nAnswers within the next 10 days.

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Opposing Party to give NOTICE.\r\n

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Defendants\r\nGregory and Jana Blakeman move to\r\nstrike punitive damages pursuant to CCP § 436.

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The\r\ncourt may, upon a motion made pursuant to Section 435, or at any time in its\r\ndiscretion, and upon terms it deems proper, strike out any irrelevant, false,\r\nor improper matter inserted in any pleading or strike out all or any part of\r\nany pleading not drawn or filed in conformity with the laws of this state, a\r\ncourt rule, or an order of the court. \r\n(CCP § 436.) The grounds for a\r\nmotion to strike must appear on the face of the pleading under attack, or from\r\nmatter which the court may judicially notice (e.g., the court\'s own files or\r\nrecords). (CCP § 437.)

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In\r\nan action for the breach of an obligation not arising from contract, where it\r\nis proven by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant has been guilty\r\nof oppression, fraud, or malice, the plaintiff, in addition to the actual\r\ndamages, may recover damages for the sake of example and by way of punishing\r\nthe defendant. (1) "Malice"\r\nmeans conduct which is intended by the defendant to cause injury to the\r\nplaintiff or despicable conduct which is carried on by the defendant with a\r\nwillful and conscious disregard of the rights or safety of others. (2) "Oppression"\r\nmeans despicable conduct that subjects a person to cruel and unjust hardship in\r\nconscious disregard of that person\'s rights. \r\n(3) "Fraud"\r\nmeans an intentional misrepresentation, deceit, or concealment of a material\r\nfact known to the defendant with the intention on the part of the defendant of\r\nthereby depriving a person of property or legal rights or otherwise causing\r\ninjury. (CC § 3294(a).) An employer shall not be\r\nliable for damages pursuant to subdivision (a), based upon acts of an employee\r\nof the employer, unless the employer had advance knowledge of the unfitness of\r\nthe employee and employed him or her with a conscious disregard of the rights\r\nor safety of others or authorized or ratified the wrongful conduct for which\r\nthe damages are awarded or was personally guilty of oppression, fraud, or\r\nmalice. With respect to a corporate employer, the advance knowledge and\r\nconscious disregard, authorization, ratification or act of oppression, fraud,\r\nor malice must be on the part of an officer, director, or managing agent of the\r\ncorporation.

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Attachment\r\nIT-1 to the First Amended Complaint alleges that Defendants filed the\r\nunderlying lawsuit for trespass (Case No. MCC 1301769) with “no legitimate basis\r\nor probable cause” because “they knew that LaPlante had a vested prescriptive\r\neasement upon the vacant land that they intended to purchase.” (Id., 2:4-7.) \r\n“The Blakemans announced to their neighbors they would ‘outspend’\r\nLaPlante in court.” (Id. at\r\n2:26-27.) The Blakemans were fully aware\r\nof the easement because it was provided in writing by their real estate agent,\r\nDennis Cutshall, and during the due diligence period were advised of such use\r\nby all the neighbors and Reed Valley residents. \r\n(Id., 4:12-22.) Yet, the\r\nBlakemans pursued a frivolous lawsuit against LaPlante and bragged “to their\r\nneighbors during a Christmas party that they ‘could outspend LaPlante’ that\r\nthey had more money for attorneys’ and that ‘they would take it all the way\r\ndespite what they learned.’” (Id., 5:2-4.) The\r\nBlakeman\'s maliciously prosecuted LaPlante for willful trespass for several\r\nyears to no avail and caused LaPlante to incur legal fees and court costs\r\nexceeding $ 200,000.00.” (Id., 5:6-7.) “They understood that UPS, Fed Ex, propane\r\ndelivery and other utility services routinely use the road and needed to\r\ncontinue using the road in order for LaPlante to receive deliveries,\r\nparticularly propane for heating his home. \r\nThe Blakeman\'s further knew from inspecting the LaPlante land,\r\nparticularly the rear portion, that traversing the 30\' ravine was dangerous,\r\nand clearly knew LaPlante had only one way in and out, and that was the\r\nCampground Road. The Blakeman\'s observed the large boulders and harsh terrain\r\nimpassable bordering the LaPlante land at the end of the Campground Road.” (Id., 5:6-16.)

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The\r\ncourt finds the above-referenced allegations sufficiently allege malicious\r\nconduct. While the allegations\r\nconcerning the Blakemans’ conduct prior to and during the underlying Trespass\r\nlitigation is irrelevant to this malicious prosecution action, the allegations\r\nthat the Blakemans had knowledge of the easement and pursued the Trespass\r\naction despite their knowledge because they could “outspend” LaPlante and “had\r\nmore money for attorneys” and “would take it all the way despite what they\r\nlearned” allege sufficient malicious conduct.

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Accordingly,\r\nthe motion is DENIED.

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