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Store Not Responsible for Injury Caused by Deliveryman

July 7, 2021

In Giant of Maryland LLC v. Webb, the plaintiff filed suit against a supermarket operator, Giant Food, for injuries she allegedly sustained when she was hit by a cart being pushed by a deliveryman. 249 Md. App. 545 (February 25, 2021). It was later determined that the deliveryman was employed by PepsiCo. The plaintiff nevertheless alleged that the supermarket was vicariously liable for the actions of the deliveryman, and a jury awarded damages against the supermarket. On appeal, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals reversed. It held that the supermarket did not exercise sufficient control over the methods or operative detail of the PepsiCo deliveryman for it to be liable for his actions. The appeals court also held that the trial court had improperly given a spoliation instruction based on an alleged failure of Giant to preserve accident video since there was no evidence that such video ever existed.