Patty Parker, an individual, Plaintiff vs. Zooey Deschanel, an individual, Victoria LaCagnina, an individual, and DOES 1 through 20 inclusive, Defendants.

No. BC 566289

Plaintiff, Patty Parker, (“Plaintiff’) complains against Defendants, Zooey Deschanel, Victoria LaCagnina, and Does 1 through 20, inclusive, (“Defendants”) as follows:

FACTS COMMON TO ALL CAUSES OF ACTION

1. The facts alleged herein occurred within- the jurisdiction of the above-entitled Court.
2. Plaintiff is informed and believes, and based thereon alleges that defendant Zooey Deschanel (“Deschanel”) was and is an individual residing in the County of Los Angeles in the State of California.

3. Plaintiff is informed and believes, and based thereon alleges that defendant Victoria LaCagnina (“LaCagnina”) was and is an individual residing in the County of Los Angeles, State of California. Plaintiff is not aware of the true names of the Defendants named herein as DOES I through 20, inclusive, and therefore sues each said Defendant by such fictitious name pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure§ 474. When Plaintiff has ascertained the true names of each Defendant, Plaintiff will seek leave of this Court to amend this Complaint.
4. Plaintiff is informed and believes, and thereupon alleges, that at all times herein mentioned each of the fictitiously named Defendants is responsible in some manner for the occurrences herein alleged, and that Plaintiffs damages as herein alleged were proximately caused by their conduct.
5. Plaintiff is informed and believes, and based thereon alleges that at all times mentioned herein, each defendant, was and is the agent or principal of the remaining defendants, and of each other, and acted in concert with the remaining defendants, and each of them. Plaintiff is informed and believes, and based thereon alleges that each defendant was in some manner responsible for the damages suffered by Plaintiff.

6. Plaintiff is the beneficial owner of the horses commonly known as Literati (USEF Number 5021 029) aka Mikey (“Literati”) and Anastasia (USEF Number 5269884) aka Anna aka Annabelle (“Anastasia”) and has the right to pursue this action with respect to Literati and Anastasia.
7. On or about May I, 20I2, Plaintiff placed the above-referenced horses under the care and training of defendant LaCagnina who also acted as the equestrian coach and instructor for Plaintiff’s two daughters who rode Literati and Anastasia until they left home to go to college.
8. LaCagnina’s duties as a horse trainer included, but were not limited to, managing the exercise schedule of the horses, overseeing the nature and amount of their feed, grooming and veterinary care, managing their competition schedule and being responsible for the safety and soundness of the horses.

9. At the time Plaintiff placed the above-referenced horses under defendant LaCagnina’s care and training, both horses were healthy and valuable horses.
10. While under LaCagnina’s care, LaCagnina advised Parker that Anastasia had suffered from an injury. Parker is now informed and believes and thereon alleges that such injury was the result of negligent management and care of Anastasia.
11. When Plaintiffs daughter went to college, Plaintiff requested that LaCagnina arrange to sell Literati and retained LaCagnina to act as her sales agent and fiduciary in connection therewith. LaCagnina agreed to act as Parker’s representative and fiduciary in connection with the sale of Literati.
12. Plaintiff is informed and believes and thereon alleges that LaCagnina used Literati to generate income for herself in that she had clients take lessons on him and show him and did not properly market Literati.
13. Among LaCagnina’s clients is defendant, Zooey Deschanel. On or about July 7, 2013, LaCagnina advised Plaintiff that Ms. Deschanel was willing to sign a lease/option agreement (the “Deschanel Lease”) for Literati. The lease period set forth in the Deschanel Lease was from July 15, 2013 to January 15, 2014.

14. Throughout the term ofthe Deschanel Lease, Deschanel was responsible for Literati. Plaintiff is informed and believes and thereon alleges that Deschanel and the other Defendants herein, and each of them, supervised the care, work schedule and management of Literati.
15. Plaintiff is informed and believes and thereon alleges that Defendants Deschanel and LaCagnina and Does 1 through 20, inclusive, worked Literati negligently and carelessly managed Literati making him susceptible to injury including, without limitation, working him in inadequate and dangerous conditions, over-using him, entering him in more events in a horse shows than is reasonable for those exercising proper horse husbandry and management skills.
16. As a result of Defendants’ neglect and mismanagement of Literati, Literati, like Anastasia, also became lame.

17. Despite Deschanel’s contractual obligation to care for Literati’s veterinary care, Deschanel returned Literati to Parker before the end of the lease term injured and unusable.

FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION

(For Breach of Contract against Defendant Deschanel and DOES 1 through 20)

18. The allegations of Paragraphs I through 17, inclusive, are incorporated into this cause of action.
19. On or about July 7, 2013, Defendant Deschanel entered into the Deschanel Lease which was in writing and provided, in pertinent part that Defendant Deschanel agreed to pay a total fee of $13,637 to lease the horse, Literati aka Mikey.
20. The term of the Deschanel Lease, was for six months, beginning on July 15, 2013 and ending on January 15, 2014.
21. The Deschanel Lease provides that Defendant Zooey Deschanel assumes all risk of loss or in jury to the horse in excess of her insurance coverage and to others arising out of her use of the horse, and or the lease of the horse during the term of the Deschanel Lease.
22. The Deschanel Lease also specifically limited Literati’s use to no more than three jumping lessons per week.
23. Plaintiff is informed and believes and thereon alleges that Defendant Deschanel frequently violated the covenant which limited Literati’s use to no more than three jumping lessons per week.
24. Due to Defendant Deschanel’s misuse and overuse of the horse, Literati, said horse has sustained a serious suspensory injury.
25. As such, Defendant Deschanel has breached the Lease Agreement in that, among other things:
a. She has misused the horse, Literati, during the term of the Lease Agreement.
b. She has failed and refused and continues to fail and refuse to pay the veterinarian and rehabilitation fees Plaintiff has incurred as a result of her misuse of the horse during the term of the Lease Agreement.

c. She has failed and refused and continues to fail and refuse to compensate the Plaintiff for the value of Literati who is now severely devalued as result of her misuse of the horse during the term of the Lease Agreement.
26. Plaintiff has fully performed each and every covenant, condition and promise required of her and has done each and every act and thing required on her part to be performed under the terms and conditions of the Deschanel Lease referred to herein, except to the extent such performance was prevented, rendered impossible, excused or waived by Defendants.
27. As a direct and proximate result of defendant Deschanel’s conduct as described above, Plaintiff has been damaged in an amount that presently cannot be ascertained or computed but is in excess of the jurisdiction of this Court. Plaintiff will seek leave to amend this Complaint to set forth the amount of said damages when the same has been ascertained.

SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION

(For Breach of Contract against Defendants LaCagnina and DOES 1 through 20)

28. The allegations of Paragraphs 1 through 17, inclusive, and paragraphs 19 through 27, inclusive, are incorporated into this cause of action.

29. On or about May 1, 2012, Defendant LaCagnina made an oral agreement with Plaintiff by which Defendant LaCagnina agreed to act as Plaintiffs agent and trainer with respect to the horses, Literati and Anastasia.
30. LaCagnina’s duties as Plaintiffs horse trainer included, but were not limited to, managing the exercise schedule of the horses, overseeing the nature and amount of their feed, grooming and veterinary care, managing their competition schedule and being responsible for the safety and soundness of the horses.
31. As Plaintiffs agent, LaCagnina was to act in Plaintiffs best interest.
32. While under LaCagnina’s care, LaCagnina advised Plaintiff that Anastasia had suffered from an injury. Plantiff is now informed and believes and thereon alleges that such injury was the result of the negligent management and care of Anastasia.

33. Plaintiff is informed and believes and thereon alleges that LaCagnina acted against Plaintiffs best interest and used Literati to generate income for herself in that she had clients take lessons on him, show him and did not properly market Literati.
34. Among LaCagnina’s clients is defendant, Zooey Deschanel. Due to LaCagnina’s negligent training and instruction and Defendant Deschanel’s misuse and overuse of Literati, said horse has sustained a serious suspensory injury. Such an injury is indicative of both overuse and inappropriate use in hazardous conditions.
35. As a result of LaCagnina’s actions, the horses, Anastasia and Literati, are both lame.
36. As such, Defendant LaCagnina has breached the oral agreement in that, among other things:
a. She misused the horses, Literati and Anastasi, during the term of the agreement.
b. She failed to act in Plaintiffs best interest.
c. She has failed and refused and continues to fail and refuse to pay the veterinarian and rehabilitation fees the Plaintiff has incurred as a result of her misuse of Anastasia and Literati.
d. She has failed and refused and continues to fail and refuse to compensate the Plaintiff for the value of both horses that now severely devalued and lame as result of her misuse.
37. Plaintiff has fully performed each and every covenant, condition and promise required by them and have done each and every act and thing required on their part to be performed under the terms and conditions of the Lease Agreement referred to herein, except to the extent such performance was prevented, rendered impossible, excused or waived by defendant LaCagnina.
38. As a direct and proximate result of defendant LaCagnina’s conduct as described above, Plaintiff has been damaged in an amount that presently cannot be ascertained or computed but is in excess of the jurisdiction of this Court. Plaintiff will seek leave to amend this Complaint to set forth the amount of said damages when the same has been ascertained.

THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION

(For Negligence Against Defendants Deschanel and DOES 1 through 20)

39. Plaintiff refers to and incorporates paragraphs 1 through 17, inclusive, paragraphs19 through 27, inclusive, and paragraphs 29 through 38, inclusive, of this Complaint as though fully set forth herein.
40. Defendant Deschanel had a duty to exercise reasonable care in her use of the horse, Literati.
41. Defendant Deschanel breached her duty to exercise reasonable care by misusing and overusing the horse, Literati, and by riding the horse, Literati, in inadequate conditions, risking injury.
42. As a direct and proximate cause of the negligence of defendant Deschanel, the horse, Literati, sustained serious suspensory injuries.
43. As a direct and proximate result of the negligence of defendant Deschanel, Plaintiff was obliged to incur veterinarian bills and rehabilitation fees for necessary and reasonable treatment of said injury for the horse, Literati.
44. As a further direct and proximate result of the negligence of defendant Deschanel, the horse, Literati, has been severely devalued as a result of its suspensory injury.
45. As a direct and proximate result of defendant Deschanel’s conduct as described above, Plaintiff has been damaged in an amount that presently cannot be ascertained or computed but is in excess of the jurisdiction of this Court. Plaintiff will seek leave to amend this Complaint to set forth the amount of said damages when the same has been ascertained.

FOURTH CAUSE OF ACTION

(For Negligence Against Defendant LaCagnina and DOES 1 through 20)

46. Plaintiff refers to and incorporates paragraphs 1 through 17, inclusive, paragraphs 19 through 27, inclusive, paragraphs 29 through 38, inclusive, and paragraphs 40 through 45, inclusive, of this Complaint as though fully set forth herein.

47. Defendant LaCagnina had a duty to exercise reasonable care in her use and training of the horses, Literati and Anastasia.

48. Defendants LaCagnina breached her duty to exercise reasonable care by misusing and overusing the horse, Literati, and by training the horse, Literati, in a manner that increased the risk of injury to the horse.
49. Defendant LaCagnina, further breached her duty to exercise reasonable care by misusing and overusing the horse, Anastasia, and by training the horse, Anastasia, in a manner that increased the risk of injury to the horse.
50. As a direct and proximate cause of the negligence of defendant LaCagnina the horses, Literati and Anastasia, sustained serious suspensory injuries and became lame as a result.
51. As a direct and proximate result of the negligence of defendant LaCagnina, Plaintiff was obliged to incur veterinarian bills and rehabilitation fees for necessary and reasonable treatment of said injury for the horses, Literati and Anastasia.
52. As a further direct and proximate result of the negligence of defendant LaCagnina, the horses, Literati and Anastasia, have been severely devalued as a result of their suspensory injuries.
53. As a direct and proximate result of defendant LaCagnina’s conduct as described above, Plaintiff has been damaged in an amount that presently cannot be ascertained or computed but is in excess of the jurisdiction of this Court. Plaintiff will seek leave to amend this Complaint to set forth the amount of said damages when the same has been ascertained.FIFTH CAUSE OF ACTION

(For Breach of Fiduciary Duty Against Defendant LaCagnina and DOES 1 through 20)54. Plaintiff refers to and incorporates paragraphs 1 through 17, inclusive, paragraphs 19 through 27, inclusive, paragraphs 29 through 38, inclusive, paragraphs 40 through 45,
26 inclusive; and 47 through 53, inclusive of this Complaint as though fully set forth herein.

55: Plaintiff placed the above-referenced horses under the care and training of defendant LaCagnina who also acted as the equestrian coach and instructor for Plaintiff’s two daughters who rode Literati and Anastasia until they left home to go to college.
56. When Plaintiffs daughter went to college, Plaintiff requested that LaCagnina arrange to sell Literati and retained LaCagnina to act as her sales agent in connection therewith. LaCagnina agreed to act as Parker’s representative and fiduciary in connection with the sale of Literati.

57. Defendant LaCagnina breached her duty of loyalty owed to Plaintiff when she used Literati to generate income for herself in that she had clients take lessons on him and show him and did not properly market Literati. She also put the interests of her other clients, including without limitation, defendant Deschanel, ahead of those of Plaintiff without disclosing a conflict of interest.
58. As a direct and proximate result of defendant LaCagnina’s conduct as described above, Plaintiff has been damaged in an amount that presently cannot be ascertained or computed but is in excess of the jurisdiction of this Court. Plaintiff will seek leave to amend this Complaint to set forth the amount of said damages when the same has been ascertained.

On the First Cause of Action
I. For general and special damages according to proof.

On The Second Cause of Action
2. For general and special damages according to proof.

On the Third Cause of Action

3. For compensatory damages according to proof.

On The Fourth Cause of Action
4. For compensatory damages according to proof.

On The Fifth Cause of Action
5. For general and special damages according to proof.

6. For punitive damages according to proof.

On All Causes of Action

7. For costs of suit incurred herein;
8. For interest allowable by law and according to proof;
9. For such other and further relief as the Court deems proper and just.Dated: December 5, 2014.

ADINA T. STERN,
A Professional Law Corporation

Attorneys for Plaintiff, Patty Parker

 

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