VIRGINIA W. CASE, APPELLANT
BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OF LAUDERDALE COUNTY AND LAUDERDALE COUNTY, MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEES
COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: LAUDERDALE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 01/11/2013. TRIAL JUDGE: HON. LESTER F. WILLIAMSON JR. TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: GRANTED SUMMARY JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF APPELLEES.
FOR APPELLANT: WILLIAM E. READY JR., HENRY P. PATE.
FOR APPELLEE: J. RICHARD BARRY, JOHN GORDON ROACH III.
BEFORE IRVING, P.J., ISHEE, MAXWELL AND JAMES, JJ. LEE, C.J., IRVING AND GRIFFIS, P.JJ., BARNES, CARLTON, MAXWELL AND FAIR, JJ., CONCUR. JAMES, J., CONCURS IN PART AND DISSENTS IN PART WITHOUT SEPARATE WRITTEN OPINION. ROBERTS, J., NOT PARTICIPATING.
NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - PERSONAL INJURY
[¶1] In April 2010, Virginia W. Case was employed as an animal-control officer in Meridian, Mississippi, when she slipped and fell on a ramp while exiting her office building. She later sued the Board of Supervisors of Lauderdale County, Mississippi, and Lauderdale County, Mississippi (collectively " the county" ) -- the entities responsible for maintaining the building, including the ramp. The county asserted immunity under the Mississippi Tort Claims Act (MTCA) and filed a motion for summary judgment. After a hearing on the matter, the Lauderdale County Circuit Court granted the motion, and Case now appeals. Finding no error, we affirm.
STATEMENT OF FACTS
[¶2] Case was hired as an animal-control officer approximately two or three weeks prior to her fall. According to her testimony, during that time, Case entered and exited her office building by way of the metal exit ramp in question about a dozen times a day without incident. The record reflects that, at the time of Case's fall, the ramp had existed at the building for at least ten years.
[¶3] On April 9, 2010, Case and fellow animal-control officer Hoses Rockette Jr. left the building. According to Rockette's affidavit, he walked down the ramp to the exit door at the end of the ramp and held the door open to wait for Case to follow him. He recalled that while he was holding the door open for her, Case walked onto the ramp and placed her feet side by side. He stated: " She acted as if she were going to slide down the ramp. She had a 'Route 44' sized drink from Sonic in her hand. Both of her feet slipped from underneath her and [she fell.]" Case denies that she attempted to slide down the ramp. Regardless, she claims that the fall caused her to lose consciousness, crack her teeth, and injure her back and neck.
[¶4] Testimony from Case, as well as other employees who work in the building, indicates that the ramp can become slippery when wet. However, the record reflects that on the day in question, the weather conditions were sunny and dry. The record also shows that there had not been any rain or other wet conditions in the area in the day or so before Case's fall that would have made the ramp slippery.
[¶5] Nonetheless, on October 21, 2011, Case sued the county claiming the ramp constituted a dangerous ...