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AB&M Enterprises, Inc. v. State

Court of Appeals of Alaska

September 2, 2016

AB&M ENTERPRISES, INC., Appellant,
v.
STATE OF ALASKA, Appellee.

         Appeal from the Superior Court, Third Judicial District, Trial Court No. 3AN-12-2437 CR Anchorage, Michael R. Spaan, Judge.

          Kevin T. Fitzgerald, Ingaldson Fitzgerald, P.C., Anchorage, for the Appellant. James Fayette, Assistant

          Attorney General, Office of Special Prosecutions & Appeals, Anchorage, and Craig W. Richards, Attorney General, Juneau, for the Appellee.

          Before: Mannheimer, Chief Judge, Allard, Judge, and Suddock, Superior Court Judge. [*]

          OPINION

          MANNHEIMER, JUDGE

         AB&M Enterprises, a business corporation, ran the Rumrunners Old Towne Bar and Grill in downtown Anchorage. The corporation was convicted of fourth-degree assault based on the conduct of two of its security personnel. The State's case against the corporation was based on the following evidence (presented here in the light most favorable to the State):

         An unruly patron named Johnny Brown assaulted one of the Rumrunners security guards, Murville Lampkin. Various members of the security staff subdued Brown and handcuffed him. At this point, Lampkin and his supervisor, George Damassiotis (the head of security for Rumrunners) decided to take Brown to the security office in the basement of the bar.

         As they boarded the elevator for the trip down to the security office, Damassiotis said to Lampkin either "Go for it, " or "There are no cameras in here; he is all yours." Lampkin then "sucker-punched" Brown - punching him in the face without warning. This punch fractured the orbital bone surrounding Brown's left eye; repair of this injury required a surgical implant.

         Lampkin, Damassiotis, and AB&M Enterprises were all charged with this assault - Lampkin because he was alleged to have personally committed the assault, Damassiotis because he was alleged to have encouraged Lampkin to commit the assault, and AB&M Enterprises under the theory that the corporation was responsible for Damassiotis's and Lampkin's conduct under AS 11.16.130.

         The law defining when a corporation can be convicted of a crime

         Under AS 11.16.130(a)(1), a corporation can be convicted of a criminal offense if the offense was committed through the conduct of an agent of the corporation, and either (A) the conduct at issue was within the scope of the agent's employment and was done in behalf of the corporation; or (B) the conduct was solicited, subsequently ratified, or subsequently adopted by the corporation.

         Subsection (b) of this statute declares that, for these purposes, "agent" means a director or officer of the corporation, or any employee of the corporation, or any other person authorized to act in behalf of the corporation.

         The potential ways in which this statute applied to this case

         Under AS 11.16.130, the jury in this case could theoretically find AB&M guilty of the assault on Brown ...


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