Roberto Trevino v. Pulaski Civic Club

If this opinion indicates that it is “FOR PUBLICATION,” it is subject to revision until final publication in the Michigan Appeals Reports. STATE OF MICHIGAN COURT OF APPEALS ROBERTO TREVINO, UNPUBLISHED September 22, 2022 Plaintiff-Appellant, v No. 357684 Wayne Circuit Court PULASKI CIVIC CLUB, LC No. 19-013085-NI Defendant-Appellee. Before: RONAYNE KRAUSE, P.J., and JANSEN and SWARTZLE, JJ. PER CURIAM. In this premises liability action,1 plaintiff, Roberto Trevino, appeals by right the trial court’s order granting summary disposition in favor of defendant, the Pulaski Civic Club. We affirm. I. BACKGROUND The Pulaski Civic Club is an organization that was originally founded in 1933 for the purpose of assisting Polish immigrants. It subsequently evolved to be open to everyone. The Club’s premises consist of a bar and a “hall.” The hall is a separate room that can be rented out for events and is partitioned off from the bar on such occasions. One of the amenities in the hall is a modular stage consisting of six-inch-high sections that can be placed next to or on top of each other. On the date of the incident, the stage had been configured to be “double stacked,” i.e., twelve inches high, for several weeks. On June 1, 2019, a member of the club rented the hall to host a private birthday party, during which the hall was partitioned off from the bar. Plaintiff, a member of the club, was hired by the celebrant’s mother to DJ the party. Plaintiff had used the stage before, but he had never seen it in a double-stacked configuration. Plaintiff arrived at approximately 3:00 p.m. that day, by 1 Plaintiff originally also alleged a claim for negligence, but he stipulated to the dismissal of that claim. -1- which time the mother of the celebrant was already there. Plaintiff, with the assistance of another person, set his equipment up on the stage from the front and accessed the stage by stepping up onto the stage from the front. At approximately 5:00 p.m., plaintiff, while on the stage, discovered a problem with one of his speakers. Plaintiff attempted to leave the stage by the side, where he saw what appeared to be a concrete block serving as an improvised “step.” Plaintiff stepped down onto that block, which “wobbled,” causing him to lose his balance and fall, seriously injuring his wrist. Plaintiff’s fall was apparently not directly witnessed by anyone. As it would turn out, the improvised step was in fact two concrete blocks (variously referred to as patio blocks, cinder blocks, or paver blocks) stacked on top of each other. No one knew where they came from, and they did not belong to defendant, nor were they placed there by anyone associated with defendant. There was also almost no evidence of how long they had been there; the only evidence was the birthday celebrant’s mother’s testimony that the blocks were already there when she arrived. Plaintiff contends that the improvised step was a hazardous condition of the premises. He does not allege …

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