Argued April 22, 2015
The MuniLaw Group, of Epsom ( Tony F. Soltani on the brief and orally), for the plaintiff.
Curtin, Murphy & O'Reilly, P.C., of Nashua ( John A. Curran on the brief and orally), for the defendant.
HICKS, J. DALIANIS, C.J., and CONBOY and LYNN, JJ., concurred.
The plaintiff, Alissa Lamb as mother and next friend of Logan Lamb, appeals an order of the Superior Court ( Smukler, J.) dismissing her complaint against the defendant, the Shaker Regional School District. The trial court ruled that the defendant was protected by municipal immunity pursuant to RSA 507-B:5 (2010). On appeal, the plaintiff argues that the trial court erred by failing to apply the
exception to general immunity pursuant to RSA 507-B:2 (2010). We affirm.
The trial court found, or the record reflects, the following. On or around May 7, 2012, Logan, a student at a school operated by the defendant, was playing football on the playground during the lunch recess when another student tackled him and " slammed him to the ground," causing injury to his head. Logan did not return to class after lunch, and none of the school's staff reported the incident on the playground or that Logan was missing from class. Logan was later found wandering the halls, disoriented. He was taken to the nurse's office, where he remained for approximately fifty minutes, at which point the nurse contacted the plaintiff to retrieve him from school. The nurse did not call for an ambulance. The plaintiff took Logan to the emergency room, where she learned that he had possibly suffered a concussion.
On January 30, 2014, the plaintiff filed her complaint alleging that the defendant " acted in a special relationship to [Logan], taking responsibility for [his] health, safety, and [well-being] while he was under its care, custody, and control," and that it had breached its duty leading to Logan's injuries. The defendant moved to dismiss, arguing that RSA 507-B:5 immunizes it from the plaintiff's negligence claims and that those claims do not fall within the exception to immunity created by RSA 507-B:2. On August 1, 2014, the trial court granted the motion to dismiss. This appeal followed.
On appeal, the plaintiff asserts two arguments for our consideration: (1) that the exception to general municipal immunity, RSA 507-B:2, applies in this case because the plaintiff's injuries arose from the operation of the defendant's premises; and (2) that the plaintiff should have been allowed to proceed to discovery to determine whether the negligent act " was a result of the defendant's knowledge of and failure to correct known student supervisory deficiencies." (Bolding omitted.) We will address each argument in turn.
In reviewing a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, we assume the truth of the facts alleged by the plaintiff and construe all reasonable inferences in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. Farm Family Cas. Ins. Co. v. Town of Rollinsford, 155 N.H. 669, 670, 927 A.2d 1234 (2007). We need not, however, assume the truth of statements in the pleadings that are merely conclusions of law. Ojo v. Lorenzo, 164 N.H. 717, 721, 64 A.3d 974 (2013). If the ...