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Holcombe v Whitaker (1975), 318 So (2d) 289 (Ala SC)

Facts:

H went to see W to get an annulment. W said “If you take me to court, I’ll kill you.” After H filed suit, W went to H’s house and tried to open the door saying same thing.

Issue(s):

Did W’s actions constitute assault? Can assault take place when there is only a conditional threat of violence?

Ratio:

"A show of force, accompanied by an unlawful or unjustifiable demand, compliance with which will avert the threatened battery, is an assault."

Analysis:

H was scared enough that she went to stay with friends. W threatened to kill H if she did something she had a legal right to do.

Holding:

Decision in favour of plaintiff H.


Discussion

  1. reasonable p 7

    Makes sense.

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