This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/12/2019 at 00:36:19 (UTC).

ROBERT KARDASHIAN ET AL VS ANGELA RENEE WHITE ET AL

Case Summary

On 09/27/2017 ROBERT KARDASHIAN filed a Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury lawsuit against ANGELA RENEE WHITE. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is RANDOLPH M. HAMMOCK. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****7472

  • Filing Date:

    09/27/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

RANDOLPH M. HAMMOCK

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs

JENNER KYLIE

KARDASHIAN ROBERT

Respondents and Defendants

CHYNA BLAC

WHITE ANGELA RENEE

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

HOLLEY SHAWN CHAPMAN

Defendant Attorney

CIANI LYNNE

 

Court Documents

NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

10/19/2017: NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

SUMMONS

9/28/2017: SUMMONS

DEFENDANT ANGELA WHITE''S REPLY TO PLAINTIFF''S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT''S MOTION FOR PARTIAL JUDGEMENT ON THE PLEADINGS

8/6/2018: DEFENDANT ANGELA WHITE''S REPLY TO PLAINTIFF''S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT''S MOTION FOR PARTIAL JUDGEMENT ON THE PLEADINGS

Minute Order

8/14/2018: Minute Order

Case Management Statement

10/31/2018: Case Management Statement

Case Management Statement

11/20/2018: Case Management Statement

Minute Order

12/17/2018: Minute Order

Case Management Order

12/17/2018: Case Management Order

Stipulation and Order to use Certified Shorthand Reporter

12/17/2018: Stipulation and Order to use Certified Shorthand Reporter

Motion to Reclassify

12/21/2018: Motion to Reclassify

Declaration

12/21/2018: Declaration

Objection

1/7/2019: Objection

Memorandum of Points & Authorities

1/7/2019: Memorandum of Points & Authorities

Notice

1/11/2019: Notice

Objection

1/11/2019: Objection

Reply

1/11/2019: Reply

Order

1/18/2019: Order

Stipulation and Order to use Certified Shorthand Reporter

1/18/2019: Stipulation and Order to use Certified Shorthand Reporter

52 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 05/21/2019
  • DocketStipulation and Order (AMENDED STIPULATION AND PROTECTIVE ORDER - CONFIDENTIAL DESIGNATIONS); Filed by Robert Kardashian (Plaintiff)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 05/17/2019
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 47, Randolph M. Hammock, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "Further Discovery") - Not Held - Taken Off Calendar by Party

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 05/17/2019
  • DocketNotice ( OF ASSOCIATION OF COUNSEL); Filed by Robert Kardashian (Plaintiff)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 05/15/2019
  • DocketSubstitution of Attorney; Filed by Angela Renee White (Defendant)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 05/14/2019
  • DocketObjection (DEFENDANT'S OBJECTIONS TO THE BLOOM FIRM'S NOTICE OF ATTORNEY'S LIEN); Filed by Angela Renee White (Defendant)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 05/13/2019
  • DocketSubstitution of Attorney; Filed by Angela Renee White (Defendant)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 05/10/2019
  • DocketNotice of Lien; Filed by Angela Renee White (Defendant)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 03/14/2019
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 47, Randolph M. Hammock, Presiding; Hearing on Motion - Other (to seal confidential documents filed in support of and in opposition to Defendant White's Motion to Reclassify Action as One of Limited Jurisdiction)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 01/18/2019
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 47, Randolph M. Hammock, Presiding; Hearing on Motion - Other (Reclassify Action as one of the Limited Jurisdiction) - Held - Motion Denied

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 01/18/2019
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Hearing on Motion - Other Reclassify Action as one of the Lim...)); Filed by Clerk

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
109 More Docket Entries
  • 11/03/2017
  • DocketCIVIL DEPOSIT

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 10/19/2017
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 10/19/2017
  • DocketNotice of Related Case; Filed by Defendant/Respondent

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 10/19/2017
  • DocketNOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 10/19/2017
  • DocketNotice of Related Cases

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 10/10/2017
  • DocketNOTICE OF WITHDRAWAL OF GLASER WEIL LLP AS CO-COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFFS

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 09/28/2017
  • DocketSummons; Filed by Plaintiff/Petitioner

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 09/28/2017
  • DocketSUMMONS

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 09/27/2017
  • DocketCOMPLAINT FOR: 1. ASSAULT ;ETC

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less
  • 09/27/2017
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Robert Kardashian (Plaintiff); Kylie Jenner (Plaintiff)

    [+] Read More [-] Read Less

Tentative Rulings

Case Number: ****7472 Hearing Date: February 16, 2022 Dept: 96

Motion for Sanctions02/16/22Kardashian vs White****7472

The court has read and considered all the papers for the motion for sanctions pursuant to CCP Section 128.7 filed by Plaintiff in connection with Defendant’s filing of the renewed motion for summary judgment/and or summary adjudication and will deny the motion.



Case Number: ****7472 Hearing Date: January 21, 2022 Dept: 36

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

Department 36

ROBERT KARDASHIAN,

Plaintiff,

v.

ANGELA RENEE WHITE, aka BLAC CHYNA; and DOES 1-10, inclusive,

Defendants.

Case No.: ****7472

Hearing Date: 1/21/2022

[TENTATIVE] RULING RE: Defendant’s Motion to Seal

Defendant’s motion to seal is granted in part with respect to Defendant’s request to file Exhibit J to the Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment under seal; and denied in part with respect to Defendant’s request to unseal alleged admissions contained within that exhibit within the Second Amended Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication, and corresponding Separate Statement.

The court on its own motion orders the Second Amended Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication filed on July 28, 2021, and its corresponding Separate Statement filed the same day, removed from the record.

The parties are ordered to brief the court at the hearing on this motion on propriety of proceeding on the first Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication filed on July 20, 2021.

Notice of Motion

The motion was timely filed and served. (CCP 1005(b).) There is no timely opposition or reply.

Legal Standard

“Unless confidentiality is required by law, court records are presumed to be open.” (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.550(c).) However, a party may move to file records under seal pursuant to California Rules of Court, Rules 2.550 and 2.551. “A party requesting that a record be filed under seal must file a motion or an application for an order sealing the record. The motion or application must be accompanied by a memorandum and a declaration containing facts sufficient to justify the sealing.” (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.551(b).) To grant an order permitting a record to be filed under seal, the court must expressly find facts that establish all of the following:

(1) There exists an overriding interest that overcomes the right of public access to the record;

(2) The overriding interest supports sealing the record;

(3) A substantial probability exists that the overriding interest will be prejudiced if the record is not sealed;

(4) The proposed sealing is narrowly tailored; and

(5) No less restrictive means exist to achieve the overriding interest.

(Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.550(d).)

Discussion

Pursuant to this court’s Order of November 24, 2021, Defendant White has filed this motion to seal regarding Defendant’s renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication. Defendant White moves pursuant to CRC Rules 2.550 and 2.551 for an order to file under seal the Exhibit J attached to Defendant’s Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment filed July 28, 2021, but not alleged admissions made in that exhibit.

In this action, Defendant filed a Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment on July 20, 2021, which included several redactions in the Motion and Separate Statement as to Defendant’s new evidence for this motion consisting of records from the Department of Family and Child Services (“DCFS Records”). On July 28, 2021, Defendant then filed a Second Amended Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment on July 28, 2021, which removed these redactions from the Motion and Separate Statement. Both motions filed the entirety of Exhibit J under seal, which consists of the DCFS Records.

In this motion, Defendant seeks leave to file the entirety of the DCFS Records in Exhibit J to the Second Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment; but seeks as well to validate disclosure in the Second Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment certain alleged admissions within those records. As such, Defendant appears to seek an order both permitting the filing of Exhibit J under seal, as well as an order unsealing certain alleged admissions within those DCFS Records. Defendant indeed references that the court should unseal certain information within those records. (See, e.g., Mot. at p. 6.)

The arguments made by Defendant have been largely resolved by the court in its rulings on Plaintiff’s two motions to seal.

First, as noted in this court’s ruling regarding Plaintiff’s two motions to seal, Welfare and Institutions Code, section 827, expresses the California Legislature’s intent that “juvenile court records, in general, should be confidential” subject to limited exceptions. (See Welf. & Inst. Code, 827(b)(1); In re Gina S. (2005) 133 Cal.App.4th 1074, 1081.) Welfare and Institutions Code, section 827 “reflects a long recognized public policy of protecting the confidentiality of juvenile proceedings and records.” (In re Gina S., 133 Cal.App.4th at 1081.) “There is a strong public policy in keeping juvenile proceedings confidential, in order to protect the child involved from future adverse consequences and unnecessary emotional harm.” (Pack v. Kings County Human Services Agency (2001) 89 Cal.App.4th 821, 828, fn. 6.) The same is supported by the Order After Judicial Review issued by the Presiding Judge of Los Angeles Juvenile Court dated November 23, 2020, permitting disclosure of specific juvenile case records for limited use in the instant civil action, subject to redaction by DCFS and ordering the documents be submitted under seal in this action. (See Lerner Decl. 2, Exh. A.)

Defendant asserts this overriding interest does not apply to Plaintiff’s alleged admissions, but does apply to the remainder of the DCFS Records, because the DCFS Records in general contain DCFS investigator and non-party witness information that should remain confidential as it is not necessary to adjudication of the RMSJ, but alleged admissions are substantially relevant to Defendant’s ability to defend against claims in the RMSJ and the policy favoring confidentiality of juvenile records is overcome because “it is not in the child’s . . . best interest to allow her father to hide the truth from the public that her mother never physically assaulted him.” (See Mot. at p. 6.) Defendant fails to authenticate the Juvenile Court Order with her motion, but the same Order has been authenticated several times regarding prior motions. (Compare Plaintiff’s Motion to Seal (original hearing date October 15, 2021), Lerner Decl. 2, Exh. A, with Defendant’s Motion to Seal, Exhibit A.) As addressed regarding Plaintiff’s motions to seal, the Juvenile Court Order states in relevant part:

The released documents shall only be used for the limited purpose of the civil lawsuit. If any juvenile case file records are attached to a document filed or submitted in the civil case, such records should be filed under seal. Except as necessary in the civil matter, the released documents shall not be disclosed to anyone other than the parties, their counsel (including investigators and adjusters), and their experts. Upon conclusion of the matter, extended if appeal is filed, all released documents are to be destroyed.

(Mot., Exh. A.) The Order does not state that any part of the documents may be disclosed to the public; only that that they may not be provided to others than the parties, their counsel, and their experts “[e]xcept as necessary in the civil matter” and that upon conclusion the released documents are to be destroyed. The court is unpersuaded that the foregoing supports that the contents of documents may be disclosed to the public under this Order; the Court and members of the jury, not the public at large, adjudicate the matter such that documents would be “necessary” for the civil matter. Nor is the court persuaded by Defendant’s argument, unsupported by legal authority, that there is no overriding interest overcoming the public right of access to records because “it is not in the child’s . . . best interest to allow her father to hide the truth from the public that her mother never physically assaulted him.” (See Mot. at p. 6.) Defendant does not address the public policy in keeping juvenile proceedings confidential to protect the child involved from future adverse consequences and unnecessary emotional harm with respect to these alleged admissions. It is equally reasonable that disclosure of documents to the public under the circumstances would be against the child’s best interests in light of this policy. (See Pack, supra, at p. 828, fn. 6.)

Accordingly, the court finds an overriding interest overcoming the right of public access, which supports permitting the DCFS Records in Exhibit J to be filed under seal. However, Defendant fails to provide sufficient support that information contained within the DCFS records is to be unsealed at this point in proceedings. (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.551(h).) Next, the court finds a substantial probability of prejudicing the overriding interest if the records are not sealed. Next, the court finds the filing of Exhibit J under seal is sufficiently narrowly tailored as relating to the DCFS Records. Next, the court finds no less restrictive means exist to achieve the overriding interest regarding the DCFS Records in Exhibit J.

As such, the motion is granted in part with respect to Defendant’s request to file Exhibit J to the Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment under seal; and denied in part with respect to Defendant’s request to unseal alleged admissions contained within that exhibit.

The court is therefore faced with the Second Amended Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication, which has already been filed without its prior redactions regarding DCFS Records. In light of the foregoing ruling, the court on its own motion orders the Second Amended Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication filed on July 28, 2021, and its corresponding Separate Statement filed the same day, removed from the record. (CCP 128(a).)

The court is, however, inclined to permit Defendant to proceed on the first Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication filed on July 20, 2021. The parties are ordered to brief the court at the hearing on this motion on propriety of proceeding on the first Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication.

Dated:

Gregory Alarcon

Superior Court Judge



b'

Case Number: ****7472 Hearing Date: November 24, 2021 Dept: 36

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

Department 36

ROBERT KARDASHIAN,

Plaintiff,

v.

ANGELA RENEE WHITE, aka BLAC CHYNA; and DOES 1-10, inclusive,

Defendants.

Case No.: ****7472

Hearing Date: 11/24/2021

[TENTATIVE] RULING RE: (1) Motion to Seal; (2) Motion to Seal; (3) Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication

I. Motion to Seal; Motion to Seal

The court heard argument on Plaintiff’s two motions to seal, with original hearing dates on October 12 and October 19, 2021.

The court was informed at the hearings from the defense that the items filed by the defense in the motions were taken from the records released by the Presiding Judge of the Juvenile Court pursuant to the Order of November 23, 2020, for which the Presiding Judge ordered the files to be submitted under seal; but that there appears to be an ambiguity whether all of these items are subject to sealing. Plaintiff disputes this, and maintains that the defense is disclosing confidential records from the Juvenile Court by not filing them under seal. The defense denies this allegation.

To resolve this dispute, the court orders defense counsel to provide a declaration: (1) listing the items that have been filed with the instant motions to seal only; and (2) indicating whether each item was filed under seal because of the item’s origin in the Juvenile Court file; or alternatively, whether each item was from another source and is not subject to sealing.

Defendant is also to file a brief addressing the propriety of filing under seal and/or unsealing these items pursuant to the Juvenile Court’s Order.

· This brief and declaration should be filed by December 10, 2021. Plaintiff may file a limited response by December 27, 2021. At that time, both motions will be again taken under submission.

II. EXHIBITS – MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT/ADJUDICATION

Defendant’s moving evidence in support of the renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication, includes one exhibit filed under seal, but has not obtained an order in this action permitting the exhibit to be filed under seal. As such, Defendant is to file a noticed motion to seal regarding Defendant’s exhibit filed under seal in support of the renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication, within 10 days.

As to Defendant’s lodged exhibits, for several exhibits the cover sheet does not specify the contents of the envelope. Defendant is to lodge amended exhibits with cover pages specifying the contents inside each envelope.

Next, specifically on Defendant’s lodged video evidence, transcripts have been filed for Defendant’s Exhibits A-F, which are the sole video evidence with Defendant’s moving papers. In order to properly identify portions of the transcripts matching with video evidence, transcripts are to have page and line numbers. (See Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.1040(a).) Defendant’s filed transcripts do not include line numbers. As such, Defendant is ordered to re-file amended transcripts with line numbers.

In order to resolve the two Motions to Seal and receive Defendant’s amended moving evidence, the renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication, is continued to January 5, 2022.

The Motion for Sanctions is continued to January 12, 2022.

Dated: ____________________________

Gregory Alarcon

Superior Court Judge

'


b'

Case Number: ****7472 Hearing Date: October 12, 2021 Dept: 36

ROBERT KARDASHIAN,

Plaintiff,

v.

ANGELA RENEE WHITE, aka BLAC CHYNA; and DOES 1-10, inclusive,

Defendants.

Case No.: ****7472

Hearing Date: 10/12/2021

[TENTATIVE] RULING RE: Motion to Seal Re: Opposition to Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment, alternatively, Adjudication

The motion is granted.

Notice of Motion

A motion to seal records must be served on all parties that have appeared in the case. (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.551(b)(2).) Following voluntary dismissal of Plaintiff Kylie Jenner on March 29, 2018, the appearing parties in the action are Plaintiff Robert Kardashian (“Kardashian”) and Defendant Angela White aka Blac Chyna (“Chyna”). The motion, opposition, and reply were timely filed and served. (CCP ; 1005(b).) Notice is proper.

Legal Standard

“Unless confidentiality is required by law, court records are presumed to be open.” (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.550(c).) However, a party may move to file records under seal pursuant to California Rules of Court, Rules 2.550 and 2.551. “A party requesting that a record be filed under seal must file a motion or an application for an order sealing the record. The motion or application must be accompanied by a memorandum and a declaration containing facts sufficient to justify the sealing.” (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.551(b).) To grant an order permitting a record to be filed under seal, the court must expressly find facts that establish all of the following:

(1) There exists an overriding interest that overcomes the right of public access to the record;

(2) The overriding interest supports sealing the record;

(3) A substantial probability exists that the overriding interest will be prejudiced if the record is not sealed;

(4) The proposed sealing is narrowly tailored; and

(5) No less restrictive means exist to achieve the overriding interest.

(Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.550(d).)

Discussion

Plaintiff Kardashian moves for an order to file several documents under seal, each related to Plaintiff’s Opposition to Defendant Chyna’s Renewed Motion For Summary Judgment, Alternatively, Adjudication. The documents sought to be filed under seal are: (1) portions of Plaintiff’s Opposition; (2) portions of Plaintiff’s Separate Statement of Undisputed Facts; (3) portions of Plaintiff’s evidentiary objections; (4) portions of the Declaration of Melissa Y. Lerner; and (5) the Declaration of Elise C. Greenberg. (Notice of Motion, at p. 2.)

Plaintiff argues that the documents to be sealed consist of or contain extensive references to records from the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services (“DCFS Records”), and that there is an overriding interest to file these records under seal to maintain confidentiality of juvenile proceedings and records to protect the best interests of the child. Welfare and Institutions Code, section 827, expresses the California Legislature’s intent that “juvenile court records, in general, should be confidential” subject to limited exceptions. (See Welf. & Inst. Code, ; 827(b)(1); In re Gina S. (2005) 133 Cal.App.4th 1074, 1081.) Welfare and Institutions Code, section 827 “reflects a long recognized public policy of protecting the confidentiality of juvenile proceedings and records.” (In re Gina S., 133 Cal.App.4th at 1081.) “There is a strong public policy in keeping juvenile proceedings confidential, in order to protect the child involved from future adverse consequences and unnecessary emotional harm.” (Pack v. Kings County Human Services Agency (2001) 89 Cal.App.4th 821, 828, fn. 6.) The same is supported by the Order After Judicial Review issued by the Presiding Judge of Los Angeles Juvenile Court dated November 23, 2020, permitting disclosure of specific juvenile case records for limited use in the instant civil action, subject to redaction by DCFS and ordering the documents be submitted under seal in this action. (See Lerner Decl. ¶ 2, Exh. A.) The same is also supported by California Rules of Court, Rule 5.552 delineating the general confidentiality of juvenile case files subject to certain exceptions, and by Los Angeles Superior Court Local Rule 7.2 providing for the general confidentiality of juvenile case files subject to certain exceptions.

On opposition, Defendant does not address Plaintiff’s argument that an overriding interest to overcome the right of public access to the record exists, and thus does not refute it. Defendant argues that Plaintiff impermissibly seeks to keep particular exculpatory admissions in these DCFS Records out of the public record. Insofar as this assertion seeks to argue the content of the information sought to be filed under seal, a record filed publicly in the court “must not disclose material contained in a record that is sealed, conditionally under seal, or subject to a pending motion or an application to seal.” (Cal. Rules of Court, Rule 2.551(c).) Defendant argues that particular contents of the DCFS Records sought to be sealed by Plaintiff are not necessary in this matter, thereby attempting to distinguish among particular contents of the DCFS Records as either subject or not subject to sealing, but the argument falls short as Defendant may not make prohibited disclosure of contents of those records to support the argument. Nor does Defendant provide legal authority or analysis that any particular contents are “no longer under seal” in this action.

Next, Plaintiff argues and Defendant does not refute that, if the records are not sealed, there is a substantial probability that the overriding interest in maintaining the confidentiality of the DCFS Records. The court finds this fact established. Last, Plaintiff argues and Defendant does not refute that the sealing is narrowly limited only to those documents containing references and analysis on the DCFS Records, and is the least restrictive means to achieve the overriding interest. The court finds this fact established.

The motion is granted.

Dated: ____________________________

Gregory Alarcon

Superior Court Judge

'


Case Number: ****7472    Hearing Date: September 17, 2020    Dept: 47

Robert Kardashian v. Angela Renee White, aka Blac Chyna

 

 

GIVEN THE CURRENT CORONAVIRUS CRISIS, THE COURT STRONGLY ENCOURAGES REMOTE APPEARENCES BY “LACourtConnect.” PLEASE MAKE SUCH ARRANGEMENTS IF YOU WISH TO APPEAR REMOTELY AT WWW.LACOURT.ORG/LACC/. NO OTHER TYPES OF REMOTE APPEARANCES ARE AVAILABLE FOR THIS PARTICULAR COURTROOM, INCLUDING COURT CALL. IF YOU APPEAR IN PERSON AT THE HEARING, YOU WILL BE SUBJECT TO ALL SOCIAL DISTANCING RULES, INCLUDING THE WEARING OF AN APPROPRIATE FACE MASK/COVERING (ABSENT ANY EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES) AS CONTAINED IN THE APPLICABLE GENERAL ORDERS ISSUED BY THE PRESIDING JUDGE OF THE L.A.S.C.

MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT OR, ALTERNATIVELY,

FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION

MOVING PARTY: Defendant Angela White

RESPONDING PARTY(S): Plaintiff Robert Kardashian

STATEMENT OF MATERIAL FACTS AND/OR PROCEEDINGS:

Plaintiff Robert Kardashian alleges that he was assaulted and battered by Defendant Angela White.

Defendant Angela White moves for summary judgment.

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendant Angela White’s motion for summary judgment is DENIED.

Defendant’s alternative motion for summary adjudication is DENIED as to both issues.

DISCUSSION:

Motion for Summary Judgment

As discussed below, Defendant has not demonstrated that she is entitled to prevail as to both causes of action asserted against her. Accordingly, the motion for summary judgment is DENIED.

The Court will proceed to address the alternative motion for summary adjudication.

Motion for Summary Adjudication

Plaintiff’s Evidentiary Objections

Pursuant to CCP; 437c(q), the Court only rules upon those evidentiary objections as to the following evidence which the Court deems to be material to the disposition of this action:

Declaration of Lynne M. Ciani

Nos. 1-6, 9: OVERRULED. Sufficient foundation; not inadmissible hearsay. It is reasonably possible these videos could be authenticated and therefore would be admissible at trial. (Sweetwater Union High School Dist. v. Gilbane Building Co. (2019) 6 Cal.5th 931, 947-949.)

Nos. 7-8: OVERRULED. Goes to weight.

No. 10: OVERRULED. Relevant; other objections go to weight.

Analysis

The purpose of a motion for summary judgment or summary adjudication “is to provide courts with a mechanism to cut through the parties’ pleadings in order to determine whether, despite their allegations, trial is in fact necessary to resolve their dispute.” (Aguilar v. Atl. Richfield Co. (2001) 25 Cal.4th 826, 843.) “Code of Civil Procedure section 437c, subdivision (c), requires the trial judge to grant summary judgment if all the evidence submitted, and ‘all inferences reasonably deducible from the evidence’ and uncontradicted by other inferences or evidence, show that there is no triable issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” (Adler v. Manor Healthcare Corp. (1992) 7 Cal.App.4th 1110, 1119.)

When deciding whether to grant summary judgment or adjudication, the Court must consider all of the evidence set forth in the papers, except evidence to which the Court has sustained an objection, as well as all reasonable inferences that may be drawn from that evidence, in the light most favorable to the party opposing summary judgment. (Ibid.)

When a defendant moves for summary judgment or summary adjudication, it must show that one or more elements of the cause of action at issue cannot be established or that there is a complete defense to that cause of action. (CCP ; 437c(p)(2).) If the defendant meets its burden to show, by a preponderance of the evidence, that an essential element of a cause of action cannot be established, the burden shifts to the plaintiff to prove the existence of a triable issue of fact regarding that element. (Consumer Cause, Inc. v. SmileCare (2001) 91 Cal.App.4th 454, 468.) If the plaintiff is unable to do so, the defendant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. (Ibid.)

Procedural Errors

When seeking summary adjudication, the separate statement must “separately” identify “[e]ach cause of action . . . that is the subject of the motion.” (CRC 3.1350(d)(1)(A), bold emphasis added.) The separate statement must also “separately” identify “[e]ach supporting material fact claimed to be without dispute with respect to the cause of action” – that is, each cause of action – “that is the subject of the motion.” (CRC 3.1350(d)(1)(B), bold emphasis added.) That means that if the same facts relate to multiple causes of action, they must be separately set forth in the separate statement as to each cause of action as to which the moving party seeks summary adjudication. Defendant’s separate statement does not comply with this requirement.

Despite this procedural error, the Court will consider the motion. Of course, if there is a dispute as to any of the 18 allegedly undisputed facts, by definition both issues must fail, since they both rely on the same facts.

Issue No. 1: “Rob’s claim for assault fails.”

Defendant (“Chyna”) argues that Plaintiff’s (“Rob”)’s cause of action for assault fails because she did not intend to inflict injury on him and did not, in fact, harm him.

The essential elements of a cause of action for assault are: (1) defendant acted with intent to cause harmful or offensive contact, or threatened to touch plaintiff in a harmful or offensive manner; (2) plaintiff reasonably believed [he] was about to be touched in a harmful or offensive manner or it reasonably appeared to plaintiff that defendant was about to carry out the threat; (3) plaintiff did not consent to defendant’s conduct; (4) plaintiff was harmed; and (5) defendant’s conduct was a substantial factor in causing plaintiff's harm. (CACI No. 1301; Plotnik v. Meihaus (2012) 208 Cal.App.4th 1590, 1603–1604, 146 Cal.Rptr.3d 585.)

(So v. Shin (2013) 212 Cal.App.4th 652, 668–669.) Chyna argues that Rob cannot prove the first and fourth of these elements: that she acted with intent to harm him (or threatened to harm him) or that he was actually harmed.

In the 1AC, Rob alleges the following as to assault:

39. As described above, Chyna intended to cause and did cause Rob to suffer the apprehension of a harmful physical contact. On the evening of December 14 and morning of December 15, 2015, Chyna broke the television in the house Rob was renting from Kylie, broke down a door, damaged the walls and obliterated the gingerbread house. Chyna made threatening comments with Rob’s gun and chased Rob out of the house.

40. Rob actually and reasonably believed that Chyna’s actions would result in imminent and continued unwanted physical contact. In fact, although Rob never engaged in the threats, Chyna’s actions did eventually result in punches to his face and head.

41. Chyna’s acts were committed maliciously, oppressively, with an improper and evil motive, and in conscious disregard of the rights of Rob.

42. As a direct and proximate result of Chyna’s actions, Rob suffered physical injury.

43. Because Chyna committed the above-described acts in a despicable, deliberate, and intentional manner, Rob is entitled to recover punitive damages from Chyna in addition to compensatory damages.

(1AC ¶¶ 39-43.) The relevant events “described above” were as follows:

6. On or about December 14, 2016, shortly after Chyna gave birth to her and Rob’s baby girl, Dream Kardashian, Chyna became extremely intoxicated on drugs and alcohol and physically assaulted Rob. Rob sustained injuries as a result of these actions and Chyna also damaged Kylie’s house, which Rob was renting at the time.

* * *

26. Chyna’s menacing behavior culminated in a violent attack on Rob in the evening of December 14 and early morning of December 15, 2016.

27. On the night of December 14, 2016, Chyna consumed a significant amount of drugs and alcohol. That night Chyna was in Rob’s house in Calabasas . . . . As Chyna partied that night with one of her friends, baby Dream was sleeping upstairs in Rob’s house.

28. Rob remained on the main floor of the house, as Chyna continued to heavily drink with her friend in a separate room. At one point in the evening, Chyna video conferenced Rob’s friends Gene and Victory on FaceTime, and was carelessly playing with Rob’s gun unaware if the gun was loaded or if the safety was on. Chyna even pointed the gun at the camera on the iPhone and told Rob’s friends not to mess around.

29. Later in the evening, while Rob was sitting on the main floor of the house, Chyna lunged towards Rob with an iPhone charging cable and attempted to strangle Rob with the cord around his neck. Chyna was purposely trying to hurt Rob and struggled with him as she tightened the iPhone cable around Rob’s neck. Rob was able to escape her grasp, however he suffered injuries to his neck and Chyna ripped his shirt around the collar area.

30. Rob darted away from Chyna and tried to evade any further attempts to attack him. Chyna, however, chased after Rob and repeatedly struck him in the head and face. Rob documented his injuries to his neck and clothing, including tears to his shirt around the neck area, by posting pictures on social media.

31. Chyna then proceeded to damage a television owned by Kylie in the house, broke down a door on the main level, damaged the walls, destroyed cell phones, and smashed a gingerbread house that was made for the holidays.

32. Chyna pursued Rob outside the house as he tried to escape in his Bentley and drive away from her. Chyna threw a nearby chair at Rob’s car causing damage to the vehicle and also used a metal rod to injure Rob.

33. Plaintiffs[1] estimate that Chyna’s wrongful conduct caused them at least $100,000 in damages.

(1AC ¶¶ 6, 26-33.)

As to her intent, Chyna has presented her deposition testimony that she “jokingly” put the charger cord around Rob’s neck and did not do so “to hurt him.” (Defendant’s Separate Statement of Undisputed Material Facts (“UMF”) No. 7; Chyna Depo. 149:16-21; 150:1 to 151:19 (Exh. H).) Rob also testified, as to the alleged beating with a metal pole, that he did not believe Chyna was trying to kill him “at that point” and that he explained the incident on December 14 by stating that “when you’re drunk, people do dumb things.” (UMF Nos. 12, 13; Rob Depo. 150:9-18; 155:22 to 156:4 (Exh. G).)

Based on this evidence as to her intent, Chyna has made a prima facie showing that Rob cannot prove this element. The burden therefore shifts to Rob to prove that there is a genuine question of material fact as to this element.

To establish intent, Rob must show that Chyna either intended to inflict harmful or offensive contact or that she intended to cause Rob to fear such contact. (Herrick v. Quality Hotels, Inns & Resorts, Inc. (1993) 19 Cal.App.4th 1608, 1617.) A person who acts willfully “may be said to intend ‘those consequences which (a) represent the very purpose for which an act is done (regardless of the likelihood of occurrence), or (b) are known to be substantially certain to result (regardless of desire).” (Gomez v. Acquistapace (1996) 50 Cal.App.4th 740, 746.) Thus, intent may be inferred from “wrongful acts evidencing wanton, willful or reckless disregard for human safety.” (Newman v. Larsen (1964) 225 Cal.App.2d 22, 24.) This is true even if the defendant “act[s] for the purpose of carrying out what [s]he conceives to be a joke.” (Restatement (Second) of Torts ; 34 (Am. Law Inst. 1965).)

Here, Rob has shown that there are genuine issues of material fact as to this element, despite Chyna’s explanation of her intent. For example, Rob has presented evidence that Chyna intended to harm him when she came at him with a metal pole, that she wrapped the phone cord tightly around his neck, that she chased him and broke down the door of the master bedroom during the incident, and that she pointed a gun at him and threatened to kill him, without Rob knowing whether the gun was loaded. (Plaintiff’s Separate Statement (“SS”) No. 20 and supporting evidence.) Under these circumstances, there is a triable issue of fact as to whether Chyna acted in a manner that demonstrated that she intended to cause him to fear for his life.

As to whether Rob was harmed, Chyna has presented evidence that he thought ripping his shirt was funny, that the phone cord was around his neck for only a few seconds, that there were no signs that he was injured in videos soon after the alleged incident, and that he has claimed no medical expenses or loss of earnings. (UMF Nos. 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 14 (Rob Depo. 117:14-118:3; 141:19 to 142:3; 197:16-25; 199:14 to 201:17 (Exh. G); Unaired Season 2 footage (Exh. C); Snapchat videos (Exhs. D, E); KUWTK excerpt (Exh. F).)

Even assuming that Chyna has made a prima facie showing that Rob cannot prove this element – which is dubious given that Chyna focuses primarily on whether Rob was physically harmed – and that the burden has shifted to Rob to prove that there is a genuine question of material fact, he has made that showing. He has presented evidence that, for example, he hired security after the incident to prevent Chyna returning and damaging the home and because he feared she would “return to the home and physically harm” him. (SS No. 8; Rob Depo. 35:16 to 36:6.)

“Assault is a tort which today recognizes the right of the individual to peace of mind, to live without fear of personal harm.” (Thing v. La Chusa (1989) 48 Cal.3d 644, 649.) Therefore, “mental suffering will frequently constitute the principal element of damages.” (Id. at 650.) Here, in addition to the evidence that he hired security because he feared Chyna would return and physically harm him, Rob has also produced evidence that he feared for his life at the time of the attack. (SS Nos. 21-23 and supporting evidence.) He has also come forward with evidence that multiple witnesses did observe that he had physical injuries at the time, including bruises. (SS No. 27.) This evidence is sufficient to create a triable issue of material fact as to whether he was harmed.

Accordingly, the motion is DENIED as to Issue No. 1.

Issue No. 2: “Rob’s claim for battery fails.”

Chyna also argues that Rob’s cause of action for battery fails because she did not intend to inflict injury on him and did not, in fact, harm him.

The essential elements of a cause of action for battery are: (1) defendant touched plaintiff, or caused plaintiff to be touched, with the intent to harm or offend plaintiff; (2) plaintiff did not consent to the touching; (3) plaintiff was harmed or offended by defendant's conduct; and (4) a reasonable person in plaintiff's position would have been offended by the touching. (CACI No. 1300; see Kaplan v. Mamelak (2008) 162 Cal.App.4th 637, 645, 75 Cal.Rptr.3d 861 (Kaplan).)

(So, supra, 212 Cal.App.4th at 669.)

For the reasons discussed in connection with Issue No. 1, there are genuine issues of material fact as to whether Chyna intended to harm Rob and as to whether Rob suffered harm as a result.

Accordingly, the motion is DENIED as to Issue No. 2.

Moving party to give notice, unless waived.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

Dated: September 17, 2020 ___________________________________

Randolph M. Hammock

Judge of the Superior Court

Any party may submit on the tentative ruling by contacting the courtroom via email at Smcdept47@lacourt.org by no later than 4:00 p.m. the day before the hearing.  All interested parties must be copied on the email.  It should be noted that if you submit on a tentative ruling the court will still conduct a hearing if any party appears. By submitting on the tentative you have, in essence, waived your right to be present at the hearing, and you should be aware that the court may not adopt the tentative, and may issue an order which modifies the tentative ruling in whole or in part.


[1] Kylie Jenner was originally a plaintiff in this action, but she has since been dismissed from the entire action.



related-case-search

Dig Deeper

Get Deeper Insights on Court Cases


Latest cases represented by Lawyer CIANI LYNNE