Benningfield v. FieldsAnnotate this Case
In this wrongful termination case, the Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the decision of the court of appeals reversing the circuit court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Defendants, holding that Ky. Rev. Stat. 342.197 constitutes a waiver of sovereign immunity against a governmental employer and that genuine issues of material fact existed precluding summary judgment on Defendant's retaliation claim against certain defendants but did not exist as to other defendants.
Plaintiff filed suit against Rick Benningfield, Taylor County Jailer; Eddie Marcum, Taylor County Jailer; Taylor County Fiscal Court; and Eddie Rogers, Taylor County Judge Executive; James Jones, John Gaines, Tommy Corbin, Matt Pendleton, Ed Goran, and Richard Phillips, all magistrates. The court of appeals reversed the trial court's summary judgment in favor of Defendants, concluding, among other things, that genuine issues of material fact existed precluding summary judgment. The Supreme Court reversed in part, holding (1) disputed issues of material fact existed as to the involvement of Taylor County Fiscal Court and Benningfield in his official capacity; (2) no material facts remained in dispute as to the involvement of Rogers, the Magistrates, or Marcum, and therefore, summary judgment was appropriate as to these individuals; and (3) Benningfield was entitled to qualified official immunity.