Baty Otto Coronado partners Steve Coronado and Mark Katz recently obtained summary judgment in a school assault case.

Several years ago, a student at a local school was attacked by a classmate and parent while on school grounds. Suit was filed by the student who was assaulted. The claims were based on alleged negligence by the school district, several administrators, and staff members.

Several months after suit was filed, the court granted a motion to dismiss the school district based on the application of sovereign immunity. The claims against the individual school defendants proceeded through discovery. A motion for summary judgment was filed by the individual defendants based on the application of the Public Duty Doctrine and Official Immunity claiming no duty was owed to the student who was attacked and there was no breach of a ministerial duty. The trial court denied the motion. A writ of prohibition was initially filed in the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District. The Court of Appeals denied the writ. A writ was then filed with the Missouri Supreme Court. The Missouri Supreme Court granted a preliminary writ and commanded the trial court to either enter summary judgment or show cause why the writ should not be made permanent. The trial court reversed its previous order and granted summary judgment for the individual defendants.