- Associated Press - Thursday, October 27, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - A court ruling upholds an Arizona law providing a defense to lawsuit defendants in cases involving plaintiffs who were under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The Court of Appeals ruling Tuesday against Mark William Franklin stems from his lawsuit against fellow spectators who punched Franklin during altercations at a 2009 hockey game.

The trial judge instructed jurors that they could rule against Franklin under the so-called “intoxicating liquor defense” if he was intoxicated and at least 50 percent at fault.

The jury did rule against Franklin. He appealed, arguing that the 50 percent threshold violates a state constitutional provision that jurors decide who was at fault in negligence cases.

The appeals court upheld the defense is constitutional because jurors discretion whether to consider a plaintiff’s negligence.

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