BRENDA RAMSEY V. COCKE COUNTY, TENNESSEE, ET AL. - Articles

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Posted by: Barry Kolar on Jun 23, 2017

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Justin G. Day, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Brenda Ramsey.

Attorneys 2:

Russell W. Adkins, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellee, Cocke County Emergency Communications District.

Daniel R. Pilkington, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, City of Newport, Tennessee.

Judge(s): BENNETT

In this wrongful death action, the decedent’s mother filed suit alleging that the county emergency communications district and the city police department refused to send help when the plaintiff called to report that her daughter was making suicidal threats and that, as a result, her daughter committed suicide later the same night. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants on the ground that the decedent’s suicide constituted an intervening, superseding cause. Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the plaintiff, we conclude that the decedent’s suicide was foreseeable and that the special duty exception to the public duty doctrine applies. We, therefore, reverse the trial court’s grant of summary judgment and remand for further proceedings.

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