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Reeves v. Prosser

Decided: October 17, 1932.

EFFIE I. REEVES, AN INFANT, BY HER NEXT FRIEND, CHARLES W. REEVES, AND CHARLES W. REEVES, IN HIS OWN RIGHT, PLAINTIFFS-RESPONDENTS,
v.
ALBERT PROSSER AND WILLIAM COWARD, TRADING AS COWARD BROTHERS, DEFENDANTS; ALBERT PROSSER, APPELLANT; PETER MCHUGH, JR., AN INFANT BY HIS FATHER AND NEXT FRIEND, PETER MCHUGH, SR., AND PETER MCHUGH, SR., IN HIS OWN RIGHT, PLAINTIFFS-RESPONDENTS, V. ALBERT PROSSER AND WILLIAM COWARD, TRADING AS COWARD BROTHERS, DEFENDANTS; ALBERT PROSSER, APPELLANT



On appeal from the Supreme Court, whose per curiam is printed in 9 N.J. Mis. R. 764.

For the appellant, Thompson & Hanstein.

For the respondents, Solve Tuso.

Wells

The opinion of the court was delivered by

WELLS, J. The above two cases were tried together in the Common Pleas Court of Cumberland county and resulted in

judgments in favor of the two plaintiffs against the defendant Albert Prosser, and in directed verdicts in favor of the defendant William Coward.

The defendant Albert Prosser appealed to the Supreme Court where the judgments were sustained and he takes this appeal to review the judgment of the Supreme Court.

The suits arose out of an accident which occurred about nine-thirty o'clock on the night of February 21st, 1929, while the infant plaintiffs were riding upon sleds attached to the truck of the defendant Coward.

The sled upon which the infant plaintiffs were riding was being drawn in a southerly direction upon the Malaga road, which is the main highway running from Vineland to Philadelphia.

Prosser was driving his car in the opposite direction and immediately after passing the truck, collided with the infant plaintiffs upon their sled.

The defendant Coward, the owner of the truck, was exonerated from all responsibility because it appeared from the testimony that the driver of the truck, Piccolo, had exceeded his authority in inviting the children to take a ride behind the defendant Coward's truck.

The appellant Prosser moved for a nonsuit which was denied and a direction of a verdict, which was also denied, both motions being based upon the ground that there was no proof of negligence on the part of appellant and that there was proof of contributory negligence on the part of the infant plaintiffs. These are the only trial rulings challenged on this appeal.

The plaintiffs, Effie Reeves, fourteen years of age, and Peter McHugh, Jr., fifteen years of age, had lived for many years on the Malaga road and were well acquainted with the fact that it was a very much traveled roadway. They had been warned by their parents of the danger of sledding upon the road in question.

On the night of the accident they had been coasting with other children upon their sleds upon a road in the vicinity and they stopped on their ...


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