The Georgia Court of Appeals has been asked to determine whether a premises liability case can be dismissed on the issue of mutual combat doctrine if one of the combatants had a connection with the establishment in a case where an Atlanta restaurant security guard shot a customer.

Interpretation of the Supreme Court’s opinion in the landmark CVS v. Carmichael case relative mutual combatant doctrine appears to be key to resolving this dispute. The plaintiff-appellants, represented by Michael Gorby of Gorby Peters & Associates, contend that mutual combatant doctrine does not control and Carmichael requires the court to look at the totality of the circumstances surrounding the shooting. He argued because the restaurant had a 25-year-long relationship with the landlord and the landlord paid weekly visits to the property, they would likely have known the restaurant had contracted a convicted felon to work security.

A photo of Michael Gorby. Michael J. Gorby. (Photo: Alison Church/ALM)