Tarasoff v. Regents Of University Of California, Cal. Sup. Ct.,

17 Cal.3rd 425, 551 P.2d 334 (1976)

Facts

Moore (D1) was a psychologist at the University of California (D2) hospital. Poddar was an outpatient of D1, and he told D1 that he intended to kill P because she had spurned his romantic advances. D1 informed the authorities. Poddar was detained for questioning by the campus police (D3). The final decision was to let Poddar go. Poddar killed P two months later. P's parents (P) brought a wrongful death action against the Regents and psychiatrists. They alleged malpractice by D1 for his failure to warn their daughter and negligence against D3 and D1 for their joint failure to take other reasonable actions to prevent the death, and a failure to detain Poddar. The latter charge was dropped because of state immunities for doctors. The superior court sustained Ds' demurrers. This appeal ensued.