Ex parte Trimble & LongmireAnnotate this Case
Cathy Trimble and Ida Longmire petitioned for a writ of mandamus to direct the Perry Circuit Court to enter a summary judgment in their favor on certain claims asserted against them by Crystal Lewis, individually and by and through her mother and next friend, Mary Lewis. In October 2012, Crystal was a 12th-grade student at Francis Marion High School. The school system was covered by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, which generally required a school district to provide reasonable accommodations to assist any child deemed to have a "disability" as that term is defined by the Act. Crystal had a medical condition that required the Perry County public school system to provide her with certain special accommodations. Longmire was an English teacher at Francis Marion High School and also served as committee-member secretary for the school's Section 504 special-accommodations meetings. Longmire prepared an updated report of the special accommodations required by Section 504 intended to inform particular teachers of the 504 accommodations for specific students. Longmire placed a copy of the report in sealed envelopes, which were to be hand delivered to the teachers. Longmire asked Trimble, acting principal of the school, about distributing the envelopes. Trimble assigned a student office aide the task of delivering the envelopes to the teachers. Rather than delivering the envelopes as instructed, the student office aide opened one of the sealed envelopes and read about Crystal's medical condition. She shared that information about Crystal's medical condition with other students. Crystal commenced this action against Longmire, Trimble, the student office aide, the Perry County Board of Education, "Francis Marion High School," and other school administrators. In her complaint, Crystal alleged that she has faced ridicule, harassment, and bullying as a result of the dissemination of her confidential medical information. She asserted claims of negligence, wantonness, nuisance, breach of contract, and invasion of privacy against each defendant and claims of negligent hiring, training, and supervision against all the defendants except the student office aide and Longmire. Longmire and Trimble moved for a summary judgment on the ground that they were entitled to State-agent immunity as to all claims asserted against them by Crystal. The Supreme Court determined that Longmire and Trimble were entitled to State-agent immunity. The trial court was ordered to vacate its order denying the motion for a summary judgment filed by Longmire and Trimble and to enter a summary judgment in their favor.