66 East Main Street, 3rd Floor Little Falls, NJ 07424

Debtor Claims He Did Not Intend to Kill Person – His Debt Should Be Discharged

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  • Debtor and his Stepson were involved in an altercation.  Stepson was a minor at the time.
  • Event occurred 6 months after Debtor married his stepson’s Mother.
  • Debtor fired 5 shots with a 9mm Barretta pistol.  
  • 2 shots in the air, 1 shot on the ground and 2 final shots hit the stepson in the bicep and forearm.
  • Between the 1st 3 shots, stepson hit the debtor in the face.
  • Stepson claimed (which seems reasonable) that the Debtor was trying to kill him and might have if the gun had not jammed before he was struck in the bicep and forearm.
  • Debtor argued he never intended to shoot his stepson but hit him by accident.
  • Debtor filed bankruptcy since the stepson was entitled to damages as a creditor.
  • Stepson files an adversary proceeding to except the damages from discharge.

Court Ruling

  • No matter what version is believed, it is obvious that the Debtor intended to cause harm.
  • The Debtor loaded the gun and fired repeatedly at the victim which is clearly reckless and negligent.
  • Not only were his actions reckless and negligent as the Debtor claims but also willful, malicious and injury occurred.
  • Based on the evidence provided and the totality of the circumstance, the debtor could not except this debt in his bankruptcy.

How could anyone believe that when they fire 5 shots and actually hit their victim that there was no willful intent to harm someone???    Glad there are judges and courts that do not allow this ridiculous assertion by the Debtor.   Never ceases to amaze me what someone will come to Court and present.