155 Ill. App. 3d at 481 (court must “consider the whole deposition”). Asked to
distinguish between “safe” and “dangerous” times for crossing a street, Choate
understood that the possibility of “get[ting] hit by a car” in the “stream of traffic” made it
unsafe to cross a street when traffic is moving. D. Choate Dep. 31 (A23).
The trial court reasoned in the alternative that Choate’s statement was an
“ultimate fact,” the admission of which would “supplant” the jury’s function. Tr. 265-
66. However, “even an ultimate fact which might give rise to a legal conclusion” is a fact,
not a conclusion of law, and a party’s judicial admission to such a fact conclusively binds
him. See Banco Popular v. Beneficial Sys., Inc., 335 Ill. App. 3d 196, 207-09 (1st Dist.
2002); see also Vision Point of Sale, Inc. v. Haas, 226 Ill. 2d 334, 345 (2007); People v.
Alvarez, 93 Ill. App. 3d 111, 115 (1st Dist. 1981) (relying on defendant’s “admission of
the ultimate fact that defendant was guilty of the crime charged”).
Finally, the trial court suggested that “[s]ome may say that no 12-year old can
appreciate such a danger regardless of the fact that they admit it, because they are 12
years old.” Tr. 1786. This reasoning is fundamentally unsound. As a matter of Illinois
law, judicial admissions made in a deposition—even by a minor—are binding upon the
party. See Cent. Ill. Light Co. v. Stenzel, 44 Ill. App. 2d 388, 393 (3d Dist. 1964).
Moreover, if the trial court’s reasoning were accepted, trespassing children could always
evade their admissions by contending that the very fact that they took the risk means that
they did not truly appreciate it. The unfortunate truth is that “many children tragically die
or are seriously injured” from even the most obvious of risks. Hootman v. Dixon, 129 Ill.
App. 3d 645, 649 (2d Dist. 1984); see also Hagy, 190 Ill. App. 3d at 845. Children often
willingly embrace risks from which adults would shrink, perhaps “in a spirit of bravado