New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

COX v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2001-011-567, Claim No. 94683, Motion No. M-63567


Synopsis


Defendant's motion for dismissal of the claim on the basis that defendant has absolute immunity for the acts alleged in the claim is granted.

Case Information

UID:
2001-011-567
Claimant(s):
ALLEN COX
Claimant short name:
COX
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
94683
Motion number(s):
M-63567
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
THOMAS J. McNAMARA
Claimant's attorney:
Allen Cox, Pro se
Defendant's attorney:
Honorable Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General
By: Paul F. Cagino, Esq.Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
August 1, 2001
City:
Saratoga Springs
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision


Defendant has moved to dismiss the claim on the basis that the defendant has absolute

immunity for the acts alleged in the claim. The claim is based on allegations that claimant was wrongfully confined to his cell following a disciplinary hearing. Following the administrative hearing, claimant was found guilty of assault and making false statements. The decision, however, was administratively reversed based on the absence of testimony by the investigating officer.

Defendant maintains that the state has absolute immunity for the actions alleged in the claim and claimant has not opposed the motion.

In carrying out their duties relating to security and discipline, the actions of correction employees are quasi-judicial in nature and are cloaked with absolute immunity so long as the actions are not taken beyond their authority or in violation of the governing rules and regulations

(Arteaga v State of New York, 72 NY2d 212, 220). Given the presumption of regularity which infers that government agencies act honestly and in accordance with law (Abrahams v New York State Tax Commission, 131 Misc 2d 594) and in the absence of any attempt by claimant to establish that the hearing officer exceeded his or her authority or that some governing rule or regulation was violated (Matter of New York State Radiological Soc. Inc. v Wing, 244 AD2d 823), the determination made following the disciplinary hearing is cloaked by absolute immunity. Such immunity is not lost simply because the determination was later reversed.

Accordingly, the motion is granted and the claim is dismissed.


August 1, 2001
Saratoga Springs, New York

HON. THOMAS J. MCNAMARA
Judge of the Court of Claims



Papers Submitted:

  1. Notice of Motion dated May 30, 2001
  2. Affirmation of Paul F. Cagino, Esq. dated May 30, 2001 with exhibits annexed