Miller et al v. Kamp et al
MEMORANDUM ORDER : 1) Deft, Kamp's Motion for Summary Judgment as to Count II of Pla's Complaint 17 be GRANTED; 2) the Pretrial Conference previously set for Tuesday, 10/20/20 is rescheduled and converted to a ( STATUS CONFERENCE set for 10/23/2020 at 08:30 AM in ASHLAND before Judge David L. Bunning.). Signed by Judge David L. Bunning on 10/14/20.(JLS)cc: COR
Case: 0:19-cv-00092-DLB Doc #: 29 Filed: 10/14/20 Page: 1 of 4 - Page ID#: 127
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY
CIVIL ACTION NO. 19-92-DLB
MICKEY MILLER and CYNTHIA MILLER,
personally and as next friend of GUNNAR MILLER
DAVID S. KAMP, and AARON KAMP,
by and through David S. Kamp as Next Friend
*** *** *** *** *** ***
This matter is before the Court upon Defendant David S. Kamp’s Motion for
Summary Judgment as to Count II of Plaintiffs’ Complaint. (Doc. # 17). The matter has
been fully briefed by the parties (Docs. # 17-1, 18-1, and 20) and is now ripe for the
Court’s review. For the reasons set forth herein, Defendant David Kamp’s Motion is
This case arises from a motor vehicle accident that occurred on August 4, 2018 at
the intersection of State Highway 9, also known as the “AA,” and Route 7 in Carter
County, Kentucky. On that day, Plaintiff Mickey Miller was travelling west on the AA to
Cincinnati. (Doc. # 18-3 at 1). His wife, Cynthia, and their grandson, Gunnar were
passengers in the vehicle. (Docs. # 1-2 at 1 and 18-3 at 1-3). Miller’s vehicle was at a
stop, three cars behind a red light at the intersection when his vehicle was struck behind
by a vehicle driven by Aaron Kamp. (Doc. # 18-3 at 2). Kamp was travelling home to
Illinois. (Doc. # 17-2 at 1). His parents, David and Jan Kamp, and his sister Alena, were
passengers in his vehicle. (Doc. # 17-1 at 1-2). At the time of the accident, Aaron Kamp
Case: 0:19-cv-00092-DLB Doc #: 29 Filed: 10/14/20 Page: 2 of 4 - Page ID#: 128
was 17 years old and had a permit license issued by the state of Illinois. (Doc. # 17-2 at
The Millers claimed personal injury, as well as property damage, as a result of the
accident. (Doc. # 1-2 at 4-5). They filed this civil action against David and Aaron Kamp
in Carter Circuit Court, alleging negligence and other related claims.
(Id. at 1-5).
Defendants removed the matter to this Court on the basis of diversity jurisdiction pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 1332 and § 1441 (Doc. # 1).
Defendant David Kamp seeks summary judgment as to Count II of Plaintiffs’
Complaint, in which Plaintiffs allege:
David Kamp was guilty of negligent entrustment in that he knew or should
have known that the Defendant, Aaron Kamp was a negligent reckless
(Doc. # 1-2 at 2).
Summary judgment is appropriate if the pleadings, depositions, answers to
interrogatories, and affidavits show there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and
the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed. R. Civ. P. 56. The
burden to show that there are no genuine issues of material fact falls on the parties
seeking summary judgment. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23 (1986).
Credibility determinations, the weighing of the evidence, and the drawing of legitimate
inferences from the facts are jury functions, not those of a judge[.] Anderson v. Liberty
Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986). This Court will consider the evidence in the light
most favorable to the non-moving parties, drawing all justifiable inferences in their favor.
Id. The ultimate question is whether the evidence presents a sufficient factual
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disagreement to require submission of the case to the jury, or whether the evidence is so
one-sided that the moving parties should prevail as a matter of law. Id. at 251-52.
Under Kentucky law, “the owner [of a vehicle] is liable if he knows, or under the
facts known to him in the exercise of ordinary care should know, that the person driving
the car is incompetent to drive it.” Owensboro Undertaking & Livery Ass’n v. Henderson,
115 S.W.2d 563, 564 (Ky 1938). The pertinent inquiry is whether the owner of the
property knew or should have known of the danger in entrusting his property to another.
See Hercules Powder Co. v Hicks, 453 S.W.2d 583, 587 (Ky. 1970).
There is no dispute that David Kamp owned the vehicle his son Aaron was driving
when the accident occurred. According to his affidavit, David Kamp knew his son was 17
years old and had a permit license from Illinois. (Doc. # 17-2 ¶ 2). Prior to August 4,
2018, Aaron Kamp had not been involved in a car accident. (Id. ¶ 3). On the day of the
accident, Aaron Kamp was not on any medication; nor had he consumed drugs or alcohol.
(Id. ¶ 4). David Kamp points out that had he felt that his son was incapable of driving, he
would not have let him drive the car in which he, his wife, and his daughter were
passengers. (Id. ¶ 5).
Once the party seeking summary judgment submits affidavits or the like in support
of its position, it is incumbent upon the party opposing summary judgment to demonstrate
the existence of a genuine issue of fact; the nonmovant must point to evidence in the
record upon which a reasonable finder of fact could find in his favor. Anderson, 477 U.S.
at 258. Plaintiffs have failed to do so here. Instead, they simply assert that Aaron Kamp’s
age, inexperience, and the fact of the accident itself are enough to establish negligent
entrustment. (Doc. # 18-1 at 3-4). In making this argument, Plaintiffs appear to assert a
Case: 0:19-cv-00092-DLB Doc #: 29 Filed: 10/14/20 Page: 4 of 4 - Page ID#: 130
type of per se negligent entrustment. However, this is not the law in Kentucky. As
Defendant points out, if it were, then every parent of a child under the age of 18 who is
involved in an accident would be liable for negligent entrustment. (Doc. # 17-1 at 3).
Rather, under Kentucky law, the owner of the vehicle must have some knowledge
that the driver of the vehicle might operate it in a reckless manner. Mr. Kamp’s affidavit
establishes that he did not have such knowledge. Plaintiffs have not presented any
evidence to the contrary. Accordingly, Plaintiffs have not raised an issue of material fact
with respect to negligent entrustment and, therefore, summary judgment is appropriate
as to this claim. Accordingly,
IT IS ORDERED as follows:
Defendant David S. Kamp’s Motion for Summary Judgment as to Count II
of Plaintiffs’ Complaint (Doc # 17) be, and is hereby GRANTED;
The Pretrial Conference previously scheduled for Tuesday, October 20,
2020 at 11:00 a.m. is hereby rescheduled and converted to a Status Conference on
Friday, October 23, 2020 at 8:30 a.m. in Ashland.
This 14th day of October, 2020.
J:\DATA\ORDERS\Ashland Civil\2019\19-92 Order Granting SJ in Part.docx
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