Question: Erica Aponte age seven attended Thanksgiving dinner at the home
Erica Aponte, age seven, attended Thanksgiving dinner at the home of Michael and Deborah Castor, her aunt and uncle. Following dinner, Erica, accompanied by her cousin, went outside and crawled under/ through an electric wire fence that enclosed Castor's horse paddock area. Erica was subsequently kicked in the face by Castor's horse, sustaining injury. Teresa Aponte, Erica's mother, fi led suit against Castor, seeking damages for Erica's injuries. Castor filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that because Erica did not have permission to leave the house or enter the paddock area, and did so without her parents' or Castor's knowledge, Erica was a trespasser and, therefore, he should not be held liable for her injuries. Aponte responded that Erica was a social guest, not a trespasser; Castor should have warned Aponte regarding the dangerous nature of the horse; and genuine issues of material fact existed that would preclude the granting of summary judgment. The trial court granted summary judgment. Aponte appealed. How did the court rule on appeal? Why?
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