WILSON et al.
HIRST et al
Appeal from Superior Court, Maricopa County; Harold R. Scoville, Judge.
Fred O. Wilson and Harold J. Janson, both of Phoenix, for appellants.
John L. Sullivan, Atty. Gen., and William P. Mahoney, Asst. Atty. Gen., for appellees.
Udall, Justice. Stanford, C. J., and LaPrade, J., concurring.
[67 Ariz. 198] This is an appeal from a judgment entered November 21, 1946, denying a recovery to plaintiffs, which judgment was
based upon an order sustaining the defendants' motion to dismiss, without leave to amend, plaintiffs' second amended complaint. The plaintiffs (appellants) are eleven women who, prior to October 14, 1944, were employed at the Arizona State Hospital near Phoenix by the State of Arizona. This tort action on the case seeking damages was brought against the five members composing the State Hospital Board who are sued both in their official and individual capacities. The defendants (appellees) will be hereafter referred to as the Board.
The gist of the second amended complaint is that plaintiffs were wrongfully discharged on October 14, 1944, from their employment by the Board without just cause or reason, and that such action was taken by the Board contriving wickedly, maliciously and wrongfully to injure them in destroying their good name, credit, and reputation, for which they seek actual damages for loss of wages as well as punitive damages in the sum of $ 1,000 each and costs of suit.
The sole assignment of error presented by this appeal is that the order entered by the lower court dismissing the second amended complaint and the judgment based thereon were not justified by the ultimate facts pleaded and are contrary to law.
The basis for the motion to dismiss, as well as the point relied upon here by the Board to sustain the judgment of the lower court, is that from the allegations of the amended complaint it sufficiently appears that the Board was strictly within its jurisdiction and acting in a quasi-judicial capacity in reviewing and determining the cause of the dismissal of defendants by the superintendent of the hospital; and that hence it was clothed with immunity from civil liability for any action taken by it in [67 Ariz. 199] its official capacity, irrespective of any allegation of ulterior motive charged against it in the complaint.
The law governing the operation of the State Hospital for the Insane is found under chapter 8, article 2, A.C.A.1939, and more particularly the rights of plaintiffs as employees appear in section 8-214 (Pocket Supplement, Laws 1941, chapter 44, section 11, page 93), which reads in part:
"(a) Except as otherwise provided in this act, the superintendent shall employ all employes of the state hospital, subject to ...