Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Summary 2012 WY 129

Summary of Decision October 2, 2012

Judge Park delivered the opinion for the Court. Reversed and Remanded.


Docket Number: S-12-0020


Appeal from the District Court of Uinta County, Honorable Wade E. Waldrip, Judge.

Representing Appellant Uinta County Sheriff Louis Napoli: Gregory A. Phillips, Wyoming Attorney General; John D. Rossetti, Deputy Attorney General; and Misha E. Westby, Senior Assistant Attorney General.  Argument by Ms. Westby.

Representing Appellants Uinta County, Wyoming, and Board of County Commissioners of the County of Uinta: Richard Rideout of the Law Offices of Richard Rideout, PC, Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Representing Appellee: Mel C. Orchard, III, of The Spence Law Firm, LLC, Jackson, Wyoming; and V. Anthony Vehar of Vehar Law Offices, P.C., Evanston, Wyoming.  Argument by Mr. Vehar.

Date of Decision: October 1, 2012

Facts:  Judee Pennington was sexually assaulted by Todd Hoover, a Uinta County detention officer, while she was an inmate at the Uinta County Detention Center. Ms. Pennington filed claims under the Wyoming Governmental Claims Act, Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 1-39-101, et seq., against Hoover, Uinta County Sheriff Louis Napoli, and the Uinta County Board of Commissioners for damages stemming from this assault. The trial court denied the Sheriff’s and the County’s motions for summary judgment on claims against the Sheriff for negligent supervision and training, and on the Sheriff’s motion for qualified immunity; and also denied the County’s and the Board of Commissioners’ motions as to statutorily imposed liability. The Sheriff and the County appealed from the denial of their respective motions. Ms. Pennington did not appeal from the trial court’s ruling granting summary judgment in favor of the Appellants on her other claims.

Issues:  Appellants present several issues. The Court finds one question to be dispositive and does not consider the other matters presented. The dispositive issue presented on appeal is:

Does the record support the trial court’s ruling that Sheriff Napoli was not entitled to assert the defense of qualified immunity?

Holdings:  The Court reversed the decision of the trial court and remanded for entry of an order consistent with this opinion.

Summaries are prepared by Law Librarians and are not official statements of the Wyoming Supreme Court

[SPECIAL NOTE: This opinion uses the "Universal Citation." It was given an "official" citation when it was issued. You should use this citation whenever you cite the opinion, with a P.3d parallel citation. You will also note when you look at the opinion that all of the paragraphs are numbered. When you need to provide a pinpoint citation to a quote the universal portion of the citation will use that paragraph number. The pinpoint citation in the P.3d portion will need to have the reporter page number. If you need assistance in putting together a citation from this, or any future opinion using the Universal Citation form, please contact the Wyoming State Law Library and we will provide any needed assistance]


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