Trial judge did not misapprehend evidence; he simply did not accept accused's version of events

Torts – Misfeasance in public office – Elements of tort

In tenth grade, RH was charged with uttering threats, arrested, and on same day, released. RH transferred to another school. RH and her parents commenced action against respondents for, among other things, misfeasance in public office, intentional infliction of mental suffering, negligence, defamation, and conspiracy. RH sought damages of $3.7 million from School Board, and each of her parents sought damages under s. 61 of Family Law Act (Act), in amount of $200,000. Trial judge dismissed RH and her parents’ claims and awarded costs, on substantial indemnity scale, in amount of $201,155.36 against parents, on joint and several basis. Trial judge also ordered that RH was liable to School Board for $100,000 of costs ordered. RH and her parents appealed dismissal of their action. Appeal dismissed. RH and her parents did not identify anything that made trial unfair. Trial judge did not misapprehend evidence; he simply did not accept RH’s version of events. Further, there was no basis to interfere with trial judge’s credibility findings. Reasons why trial judge found that key aspects of RH’s testimony were not credible were clear, and all causes of action advanced depended on acceptance of RH’s testimony.

Hajrizi v. Ottawa-Carleton District Schoolboard (2020), 2020 CarswellOnt 1015, 2020 ONCA 32, Alexandra Hoy A.C.J.O., Doherty J.A., and Marrocco A.C.J.S.C. (ad hoc) (Ont. C.A.); affirmed (2018), 2018 CarswellOnt 7262, 2018 ONSC 2649, Martin James J. (Ont. S.C.J.). (Ont. C.A.); leave to appeal refused (2018), 2018 CarswellOnt 20271, 2018 ONSC 6644, Martin James J. (Ont. S.C.J.).

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