Richardson v. Rankin County School Dist., No. 58337

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
Writing for the CourtBefore ROY NOBLE LEE; PRATHER; ROY NOBLE LEE; PITTMAN
Citation540 So.2d 5
Docket NumberNo. 58337
Decision Date22 February 1989
Parties52 Ed. Law Rep. 1308 Alma Jane RICHARDSON v. RANKIN COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT; and Michael B. Vinson, County Superintendent of Education of Rankin County, MS; Elton Jay, Henry Cannon, Shirley Hall, Ann Sturdivant and A.J. Comfort, in their Capacity as Members of the Board of Trustees of Rankin County School District, and Darlene Collier.

Page 5

540 So.2d 5
52 Ed. Law Rep. 1308
Alma Jane RICHARDSON
v.
RANKIN COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT; and Michael B. Vinson,
County Superintendent of Education of Rankin County, MS;
Elton Jay, Henry Cannon, Shirley Hall, Ann Sturdivant and
A.J. Comfort, in their Capacity as Members of the Board of
Trustees of Rankin County School District, and Darlene Collier.
No. 58337.
Supreme Court of Mississippi.
Feb. 22, 1989.

Page 6

Jerry T. Johnston, Brandon, for appellant.

Fred M. Harrell, Jr., Robert R. Rester, Jr., Harrell & Rester, Brandon, for appellees.

Mike Moore, Atty. Gen. by Robert L. Gibbs, Deputy Atty. Gen., Jackson, for amicus curiae.

Before ROY NOBLE LEE, C.J., and PRATHER and ZUCCARO, JJ.

PRATHER, Justice, for the Court:

This appeal revisits the doctrine of governmental immunity abandoned by this Court in Pruett v. City of Rosedale, 421 So.2d 1046 (Miss.1982) and seeks total and final abandonment of such doctrine again by this Court. Plaintiff Alma Jane Richardson suffered personal injury in an accident between her vehicle and a Rankin County School bus driven by Darlene Collier. Richardson sued the Rankin County School District, and its School Superintendent Michael B. Vinson, and all members of its Board of Trustees in their official capacities, and the school bus driver. The Circuit Court of Rankin County granted a partial summary judgment in favor of the defendants, excepting Darlene Collier.

Feeling aggrieved, Alma Jane Richardson brings this interlocutory appeal and assigns as error the following:

That the Circuit Court of Rankin County, Mississippi, erred in entering its order granting Motion For Partial Summary Judgment.

I.

Richardson filed her complaint alleging that on May 1, 1986, she was injured as a result of a collision involving her automobile and a school bus owned by the Rankin County School District and being operated by its employee, Darlene Collier. Richardson bases her theory of liability upon the statutory liability of the Rankin County School District, et al, as provided under Miss.Code Ann. Sec. 37-41-37, et seq. (1986 Supp.) and upon the theory of negligence. Negligence was alleged against the School District in failing to properly train Collier and to insure that she operated the District's property in a safe, careful and lawful manner, as well as allowing Collier to continue to operate a school bus after having knowledge of Collier's prior involvement in traffic mishaps and near accidents while operating the District's bus. Negligence was alleged against Collier for driving at a greater rate of speed than warranted under the circumstances existing immediately prior to the accident, driving across the center of the road over into the traffic lane for approaching traffic, failing to have the bus under control, and failing to stop the bus. Richardson demanded judgment against all defendants, jointly and severally, in the amount of $550,000.

On March 31, 1987, all of the defendants filed their answer setting forth their defenses, including the defense that the defendants are immune from liability under the theory of sovereign or governmental immunity and denying all material allegations

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of the complaint and denying that Richardson is entitled to recover any sums whatsoever.

All defendants, excluding Darlene Collier, filed their Motion For Partial Summary Judgment on March 31, 1987. The motion alleged that the Rankin County School District, including its Superintendent and Board of Trustees, as political subdivisions of the State of Mississippi, as a matter of law, is immune from liability for damages, if any, excluding that provided under Miss.Code Ann. Sec. 37-41-37 et seq., (1986 Supp.).

On May 11, 1987, the Order of the Circuit Court of Rankin County, Mississippi, granting Motion For Partial Summary Judgment was entered. The circuit court found that the extent of liability of the Rankin County School District for damages is controlled by the case of Pruett v. City of Rosedale, 421 So.2d 1046 (Miss.1982), by the provisions of Sec. 37-41-37, et seq., Miss.Code Ann. (1986 Supp.), and by Sec. 4 of Chapter 495, Laws of 1984, as amended by Sec. 12, Chapter 474, Laws of 1985, as amended by Sec. 6 of Chapter 438 of the general laws...

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14 practice notes
  • Presley v. Mississippi State Highway Com'n, No. 90-CC-0644
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • August 31, 1992
    ...575 So.2d 999 (Miss.1990) cert. denied --- U.S. ----, 112 S.Ct. 72, 116 L.Ed.2d 46 (1991); Richardson v. Rankin County School District, 540 So.2d 5 (Miss.1989); Webb v. County of Lincoln, 536 So.2d 1356 (Miss.1988); Region VII, Mental Health-Mental Retardation Center v. Isaac, 523 So.2d 101......
  • Gale v. Thomas, No. 1998-CA-01234-SCT.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • December 9, 1999
    ...580 So.2d 733, 735 (Miss.1991); McFadden v. State, 542 So.2d 871, 876-77, fn. 2 (Miss.1989); Richardson v. Rankin County School Dist., 540 So.2d 5, 7-8 (Miss.1989); Webb v. County of Lincoln, 536 So.2d 1356, 1358-59 (Miss....
  • Brown v. Houston School Dist., No. 95-CA-00268-SCT
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • December 18, 1997
    ...immunity to the State and its political subdivisions, including local school districts. Richardson v. Rankin County School District, 540 So.2d 5, 8 (Miss.1989). Thus, Brown's claim against the School District is barred by sovereign immunity. Apparently Brown concedes this point when she sta......
  • Quinn v. Mississippi State University, No. 94-CA-01160-SCT
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • July 2, 1998
    ...and prior to the holding in Presley, protected the state against suit. Robinson, 655 So.2d at 869; Richardson v. Rankin County Sch. Dist., 540 So.2d 5, 8 (Miss.1989) (not ruling on constitutional grounds). Because Presley is not retroactive, the Sovereign Immunity Act of 1984 as subsequentl......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
14 cases
  • Presley v. Mississippi State Highway Com'n, No. 90-CC-0644
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • August 31, 1992
    ...575 So.2d 999 (Miss.1990) cert. denied --- U.S. ----, 112 S.Ct. 72, 116 L.Ed.2d 46 (1991); Richardson v. Rankin County School District, 540 So.2d 5 (Miss.1989); Webb v. County of Lincoln, 536 So.2d 1356 (Miss.1988); Region VII, Mental Health-Mental Retardation Center v. Isaac, 523 So.2d 101......
  • Gale v. Thomas, No. 1998-CA-01234-SCT.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • December 9, 1999
    ...580 So.2d 733, 735 (Miss.1991); McFadden v. State, 542 So.2d 871, 876-77, fn. 2 (Miss.1989); Richardson v. Rankin County School Dist., 540 So.2d 5, 7-8 (Miss.1989); Webb v. County of Lincoln, 536 So.2d 1356, 1358-59 (Miss....
  • Brown v. Houston School Dist., No. 95-CA-00268-SCT
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • December 18, 1997
    ...immunity to the State and its political subdivisions, including local school districts. Richardson v. Rankin County School District, 540 So.2d 5, 8 (Miss.1989). Thus, Brown's claim against the School District is barred by sovereign immunity. Apparently Brown concedes this point when she sta......
  • Quinn v. Mississippi State University, No. 94-CA-01160-SCT
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • July 2, 1998
    ...and prior to the holding in Presley, protected the state against suit. Robinson, 655 So.2d at 869; Richardson v. Rankin County Sch. Dist., 540 So.2d 5, 8 (Miss.1989) (not ruling on constitutional grounds). Because Presley is not retroactive, the Sovereign Immunity Act of 1984 as subsequentl......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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