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Zameer v. City of Chicago

Court of Appeals of Illinois, First District, Fifth Division

July 19, 2013

SHAHEEN ZAMEER, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
THE CITY OF CHICAGO, Defendant-Appellee.

Rule 23 Order filed April 26, 2013

Rule 23 Order withdrawn June 6, 2013

Held[*]

Summary judgment was properly entered for defendant city in an action for the injuries suffered when plaintiff tripped and fell on a sidewalk with a two-inch height difference between two slabs of concrete, since there was nothing in the record showing that the city had actual or constructive notice of the height difference prior to plaintiff’s injury.

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County, No. 10-L-12704; the Hon. Kathy M. Flanagan, Judge, presiding.

Jeffrey Friedman, of Law Office of Jeffrey Friedman, P.C., of Chicago, for appellant.

Stephen R. Patton, Corporation Counsel, of Chicago (Benna Ruth Solomon, Myriam Zreczny Kasper, and Christopher S. Norborg, Assistant Corporation Counsel, of counsel), for appellee.

Presiding Justice McBride and Justice Howse concurred in the judgment and opinion.

OPINION

TAYLOR, JUSTICE

¶ 1 Summary judgment in defendant's favor was affirmed where there was insufficient evidence of either actual or constructive notice to the city of the height difference in the sidewalk prior to the plaintiff's fall.

¶ 2 The trial court granted defendant's motion for summary judgment. On appeal, plaintiff contends that summary judgment should be vacated because there was sufficient evidence such that there was a material issue of whether defendant had notice and therefore merited a jury trial and was not proper for summary judgment.

¶ 3 BACKGROUND

¶ 4 Plaintiff Shaheen Zameer filed a complaint against the city of Chicago on November 8, 2010, alleging that on September 2, 2010, she tripped and fell at or about 6017 North Sacramento Avenue in the city of Chicago due to a differential in height between two sidewalk slabs. She was walking with her daughter when she fell. An ambulance brought her to the hospital, where she was found to have sustained a broken wrist, requiring surgery, as well as contusions and abrasions to her face, hands and knees.

ΒΆ 5 Plaintiff claimed the city had a duty to exercise reasonable care in maintaining public sidewalks for their intended purpose. She further claimed the city failed to maintain the sidewalk in a reasonably safe condition. Plaintiff also claimed the sidewalk crack upon which she tripped constituted an unreasonably dangerous defect because the degree of the disparity in the elevation along the surface of the sidewalk was approximately two inches. The city filed its answer, asserting, among other affirmative defenses, that it was immune from liability under the Local Governmental and Governmental Employees ...


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