Note to readers: Raymond Ward, picked up this post and got comments from some lawyers in the know. This pleading was a joke, a hoax that got loose on the internet. See Ray's post at http://raymondpward.typepad.com/newlegalwriter/2008/07/the-dumbass-def.html
My sister, who is a prosecutor in Austin, shared with me a short, but pithy pleading from a Texas civil action for personal injury. The defendant pleads in pertinent part:
II.From the defendant's answer in Albert Henry v. Maersk Line Limited, Harris County (Texas) docket number 2008-26963, filed June 4, 2008. I have a PDF image of the pleading if anybody wants proof that this is not exaggerated. The filing attorney submits this answer "respectfully," which I guess is different in Texas from where I practiced. However, I think I'll file the dumbass defense for future use!
Defendants assert that Plaintiff's damages were caused in whole or part by his own contributory negligence. Specifically, the plaintiff is a dumbass who failed to unlock a twist lock, causing his own injury - the f***king idiot (no stars in the original folks) Thus, a jury should also consider the negligence of the plaintiff and defendants assert the dumbass defense.
WHEREFORE, PREMISES CONSIDERED, defendants WALLACE MOSES AND APM TERMINALS pleads (sic) therefore, for a take-nothing judgment and that the case be dismissed because the plaintiff is a malingering dipsh*t, for all costs, and for all other just relief.