This opinion will be unpublished and may not be cited except as provided by Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (1994) State of Minnesota in Court of Appeals C8-96-732 Francis Fromm and Tracee Fromm, husband and wife, Respondents, vs. State Farm Mutual Insurance Company of Bloomington, Illinois, Appellant. Filed October 15, 1996 Reversed and remanded Forsberg, Judge Redwood County District Court File No. C9-95-368 J. Brian O'Leary, O'Leary & Moritz, P.O. Box 76, Springfield, MN 56087 (for Respondents) William M. Hart, Katherine A. McBride, Meagher & Geer, P.L.L.P., 4200 Multifoods Tower, 33 South Sixth Street, Minneapolis, MN 55402 (for Appellant) Considered and decided by Peterson, Presiding Judge, Klaphake, Judge, and Forsberg, Judge.(*) [Footnote] (*)Retired judge of the Minnesota Court of Appeals, serving by appointment pursuant to Minn. Const. art. VI, § 10. Unpublished Opinion FORSBERG, Judge (Hon. David W. Peterson, District Court Trial Judge) Appellant insurance company challenges summary judgment, alleging that the insured's claim for no-fault benefits is not based upon the maintenance or use of a motor vehicle. We reverse and remand. Facts John Fromm loaded a shotgun and drove to a cornfield where his brother, respondent Francis Fromm, was working. John exited his truck and shot Francis twice. Francis's wife, respondent Tracee Fromm, who had just dropped off her husband and was driving away, saw John aiming the gun at Francis. She backed up to where Francis was lying on the ground and shifted her truck into neutral. As she knelt on the front seat and attempted to pull her husband into the vehicle, John fired two shots through the truck's rear window, striking Tracee once. Appellant State Farm Mutual Insurance Company denied the Fromms' applications for no-fault benefits, claiming that their injuries did not arise out of the maintenance or use of a motor vehicle. The Fromms brought a declaratory judgment action against State Farm. After a hearing on cross- motions for summary judgment, the district court denied Francis's motion and ordered summary judgment in favor of State Farm with regard to him. It held, however, that Tracee's injuries arose out of her use of a motor vehicle and granted her motion for summary judgment. State Farm appeals. Decision On appeal from summary judgment, this court must determine whether any issues of material fact exist and whether the district court erred in its application of the law. Offerdahl v. University of Minn. Hosps. & Clinics, 426 N.W.2d 425, 427 (Minn. 1988). The facts are not in dispute here; the parties simply contest the interpretation of the phrase ``maintenance or use of a motor vehicle'' as set forth in the no-fault act. This dispute presents a legal issue for the court to determine. Continental W. Ins. v. Klug, 415 N.W.2d 876, 877 (Minn. 1987). For an insured to be eligible for no-fault benefits, three general requirements must be met: (1) the vehicle must be an ``active accessory in causing the injury,'' meaning ``something less than proximate cause in the tort sense and something more than the vehicle being the mere situs of the injury;'' (2) there can be no act of independent significance breaking the causal link between the injury and the use of the vehicle; and (3) the injury must occur while the vehicle is being used for transportation purposes. Klug, 415 N.W.2d at 878 (citations omitted). Ultimately, whether these factors are met turns on the particular facts of each case. Classified Ins. Corp. v. Vodinelich, 368 N.W.2d 921, 923 (Minn. 1985). Regardless of the particular details, though, one thing is certain: ``The fact that an injury occurs while the injured party is in a motor vehicle is not dispositive of the issue.'' Edwards v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins., 399 N.W.2d 95, 98 (Minn. App. 1986), review denied (Minn. Mar. 13, 1987). In the present case, we are convinced that the district court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of Tracee because two Klug factors the ``causal link'' and the ``transportation purposes'' elements are not met.
1. Causal Link In deciding that this factor was met, the district court stated: From Ms. Fromm's perspective there was no act of independent significance to break the causal link between her vehicle and her injuries. Ms. Fromm was using her vehicle as a rescue device because of the shots being fired at her husband. It was bullets from the same gun, fired by the same gunman within a moment of her husband being shot which injured her. This conclusion is erroneous because it is based on the faulty presumption that this factor must be viewed from the victim's perspective. The district court reached this conclusion by questioning Klug's validity following the Minnesota Supreme Court's decision in McIntosh v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins., 488 N.W.2d 476 (Minn. 1992). The McIntosh court held that, for purposes of determining the applicability of no-fault coverage, the term ``accident'' is to be viewed from the victim's perspective. Id. at 480. The district court in the case at hand applied that holding to this Klug factor in other words, it applied it out of context but given that McIntosh reaffirmed Klug's applicability, the district court did so erroneously. In a factually analogous case, we concluded that there was no ``causal link.'' Wieneke v. Home Mut. Ins., 397 N.W.2d 597, 600 (Minn. App. 1986), review denied (Minn. Jan. 21, 1987). In Wieneke, a driver exited his car and walked to the insured's car, where a heated exchange about driving followed. Id. at 598. While the insured was still seated in his car, the other person punched him in the face, breaking his nose. Id. at 598-99. The injured motorist was denied coverage under the no-fault and uninsured motorist provisions of his automobile insurance policy. Id. at 599. We held that the assailant's battery, although precipitated by a driving dispute, and although visited upon the insured as he sat in his own motor vehicle, ``unequivocally establish[ed] a break in the necessary causal connection between the tortfeasor's acts causing the injury and the use of an automobile.'' Id. at 600. Applying that logic here mandates the conclusion that Tracee's injuries resulted from an act of independent significance. As in Wieneke, the assailant's act here of intentionally discharging a shotgun breaks any causal link. 2. Transportation Purposes The requirement that coverage will exist only for injuries resulting from uses for transportation purposes is intended to limit an automobile insurance company's liability to those risks the policy was intended to insure against, that is, against risks associated with ``motoring.'' Vodinelich, 368 N.W.2d at 923. In finding that this connection was met here, the district court made the following bold statement: [T]his Court takes judicial notice of the many cases which have come before it involving drivers and passengers of automobiles who are victims of assaults involving firearms. In addition, this Court notes that through the media the average person is regularly exposed to stories involving car-jacking in which a gun is used, drive-by shootings and random assaults in which a gun is used to shoot at a passenger or driver of a vehicle which was stopped at a stoplight or passing by on the highway. With the number of assaults involving firearms and automobiles reaching an all-time high and public awareness of those assaults, being shot while operating an automobile has become a risk associated with driving in 1995 and is recognized as such by those buying automobile insurance. Though we commend the court's concern, we nevertheless disagree with its resolution. As we stated a decade ago in Edwards, [t]he risk of being a victim of a violent crime is unfortunately a risk associated with living in our society; it is not a risk associated with motoring. 399 N.W.2d at 98. This observation is as true now as when we made it. The district court's concern does not authorize us to depart from existing precedent, which mandates a conclusion that there is no coverage. Because the district court erroneously concluded that these two Klug factors are met, we reverse and remand, with directions to enter judgment of dismissal in favor of State Farm. Reversed and remanded.