Posts tagged "Moulton"

Estate of Moulton v. Puopolo, et al. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-046-14)

NOTICE: All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;     SJC‑11357   ESTATE OF STEPHANIE MOULTON  vs.  NICHOLAS PUOPOLO & others.[1] Middlesex.     November 4, 2013.  ‑  March 14, 2014. Present:  Ireland, C.J., Spina, Cordy, Botsford, Gants, Duffly, & Lenk, JJ.   Wrongful Death.  Workers’ Compensation Act, Action against employer, Identity of employer.  Governmental Immunity.  Practice, Civil, Wrongful death, Motion to dismiss, Interlocutory appeal, Standing.  Corporation, Charitable corporation, Director’s liability, Board of directors.  Negligence, Wrongful death, Governmental immunity, Employer, Gross negligence.  Fiduciary.  Attorney General.       Civil action commenced in the Superior Court Department on April 15, 2011.   A motion to dismiss was heard by Douglas H. Wilkins, J.   The Supreme Judicial Court on its own initiative transferred the case from the Appeals Court.     John D. Frumer for the defendants. John James Regan (Barry A. Feinstein & Thomas Hodgkins with him) for the plaintiff.   The following submitted briefs for amici curiae: Robert J. Murphy, Peter C. Kober, & William P. Mekrut for Massachusetts Council of Human Services Providers, Inc., & others. John J. Barter for Professional Liability Foundation, Ltd. Carol A. Kelly for Property Casualty Insurers Association of America.       LENK, J.  At the time of her death on January 20, 2011, twenty-five year old Stephanie Moulton was employed as a residential treatment counsellor at North Suffolk Mental Health Association, Inc. (North Suffolk), a charitable corporation that provides mental health and rehabilitation services.[2]  While at work at North Suffolk’s Revere treatment facility, Moulton was alone with DeShawn James Chappell, one of the facility’s residents, when Chappell assaulted Moulton, causing her death.[3]   Several months after her death, Moulton’s estate brought a wrongful death action, G. L. c. 229, § 2, in the Superior Court against the directors of North Suffolk (director defendants),[4] two psychiatric consultants who had been involved in Chappell’s admission,[5] the Commonwealth, and Chappell.[6]  Claiming that the defendants’ conduct was “willful, wanton, reckless, malicious and constituted gross negligence,” the complaint seeks punitive damages, and separately alleges a breach of fiduciary duty by the director defendants.  The gravamen of the complaint against the director defendants is that, as a result of admissions and operating policies that they had effectuated, and others that they had failed to effectuate, those who evaluated clients for residential placement were unaware of Chappell’s lengthy history of convictions of violent crimes and his mental health history exhibiting a tendency toward violence.  Moreover, […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - March 15, 2014 at 11:10 am

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