Roberson v. City of Rialto (4th Dist., Div. 2, 5/21/2014, E058187)
The Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed a judgment denying a petition for writ of mandate to invalidate project approvals for the construction of a large commercial retail center in the City of Rialto (the “City”) to be anchored by a Wal-Mart Supercenter. The court held that: (1) the appellant had not demonstrated that the trial court committed reversible error by failing to credit the appellant’s “evidence of prejudice,” and (2) appellant’s defective notice claims were barred by res judicata. The court’s conclusion that the parties were in privity with one another, despite the appellant’s assertion he brought the case in his own interest, demonstrates how defendants may be able to more effectively apply the doctrine of res judicata to bar subsequent claims in litigation under the California Environmental Quality Act.