APPEAL FROM THE FIFTEENTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT, PARISH OF LAFAYETTE, NO. C-20055112. HONORABLE JULES D. EDWARDS, III, DISTRICT JUDGE.
Thomas Hightower, Jr., Patrick Wade Kee, Lafayette, LA, COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLANT: Shelter Mutual Insurance Co.
Kraig Thomas Strenge, Lafayette, LA, COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLEE: Louis Houston.
Linda Law Clark, Decuir, Clark & Adams, LLP, Baton Rouge, LA, COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLEE: University of Louisiana System.
John M. Jefcoat, Galloway Jefcoat, LLP, Lafayette, LA, COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF/APPELLEE: Kacie Renee Spears.
Court composed of Jimmie C. Peters, Marc T. Amy, and Elizabeth A. Pickett, Judges.
[14-1191 La.App. 3 Cir. 1]
Marc T. Amy, Judge.
The plaintiff filed suit against her professor, his homeowner's insurer, and the university where she was attending classes and alleged that she sustained damages after the professor became enraged during a class and acted in a threatening manner. The professor filed a cross-claim against his homeowner's insurer, seeking a defense and penalties associated with the denial of the defense. The insurer asserted that the petition did not allege that the damages resulted from an accident and, furthermore, that the necessary coverage was excluded as the purported actions were intentional in nature and/or undertaken as part of a business pursuit. The trial court entered partial summary judgment. The insurer appeals. For the following reasons, we affirm.
Factual and Procedural Background
The plaintiff, Kacie Renee Spears, filed the initial petition in this matter and alleged that she was a student in the physics classroom of Dr. Louis Houston in 2004 when he threatened to kill her, spit in her face, struck a fellow student, and " held her captive through threats of death if she or any other students attempted to leave the classroom." The plaintiff sought damages
associated with " emotional and psychological trauma," including medical expenses.
In an amended petition, the plaintiff named Dr. Houston's homeowner's insurer, Shelter Mutual Insurance Company, as a defendant. In turn, Shelter filed a motion for summary judgment, contesting coverage under the subject policy. It argued that the actions, as alleged, were intentional and occurred during a business pursuit insofar as Dr. Houston was a university professor. The trial court denied Shelter's motion for summary judgment, finding the existence of genuine issues of material fact. Shelter's subsequent application for supervisory writs was ...