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Barbour-Amir v. Comcast of Georgia/Virginia, Inc.

Court of Appeals of Georgia

April 29, 2015

BARBOUR-AMIR
v.
COMCAST OF GEORGIA/VIRGINIA, INC

Premises liability. Gwinnett State Court. Before Judge South.

McAleer Law Firm, Charles H. McAleer, for appellant.

Moore Ingram Johnson & Steele, William R. Johnson, for appellee.

BARNES, Presiding Judge. Ray and McMillian, JJ., concur.

OPINION

Page 232

Barnes, Presiding Judge.

Alesia Barbour-Amir filed this premises liability action against Comcast of Georgia/Virginia, Inc. (" Comcast" ), alleging that she was injured when she tripped over a child who was sitting on the floor behind her in a Comcast store. After discovery, Comcast filed a motion for summary judgment, which the trial court granted. Because there is no evidence that Comcast had actual or constructive knowledge of the hazard posed by the child, we affirm the grant of summary judgment to Comcast.

Summary judgment is proper if the pleadings and evidence " show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." OCGA § 9-11-56 (c). A defendant can prevail on summary judgment

by showing the court that the documents, affidavits, depositions and other evidence in the record reveal that there is no evidence sufficient to create a jury issue on at least one essential element of [the] plaintiff's case. If there is no evidence sufficient to create a genuine issue as to any essential element of [the] plaintiff's claim, that claim tumbles like a house of cards. All of the other disputes of fact are rendered immaterial.

Lau's Corp. v. Haskins, 261 Ga. 491 (405 S.E.2d 474) (1991). We review the grant of summary judgment de novo and view the evidence in the light most favorable to the

Page 233

nonmovant. Hood v. Todd, 287 Ga. 164, 165 (695 S.E.2d 31) (2010).

[332 Ga.App. 280] So viewed, the evidence showed that on July 5, 2010, Barbour-Amir walked into a Comcast store and got in line to pay a bill. The store was narrow and crowded, and several customer service representatives were assisting customers from behind separate teller windows. The store also had a security guard on the premises to protect the property, staff members, and customers and to maintain order inside the store.[1] While monitoring the surroundings, the guard would stand inside the store along the wall or at the front door.

When Barbour-Amir reached the front of the line, the security guard directed her to one of the teller windows. After Barbour-Amir paid her bill at the teller window, she began turning around to leave the store. Mid-turn, however, she tripped over a young child who was sitting on the floor behind her and fell to the floor, injuring her ankle, knees, and ...


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