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Storey v. RGIS Inventory Specialists, LLC

Court of Appeals of Missouri, Eastern District, Second Division

May 12, 2015

KENNETH E. STOREY, TRUSTEE OF THE KENNETH E. STOREY REVOCABLE TRUST DATED NOVEMBER 13, 1998, Plaintiff/Appellant,
v.
RGIS INVENTORY SPECIALISTS, LLC and NYRA CAMPBELL, Defendants/Respondents

Page 651

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cape Girardeau County. Honorable Benjamin F. Lewis.

Thomas W. Collins, III, Shaun D. Hanschen, Sikeston, MO, For Plaintiff/Appellant.

Jeffrey K. Suess, Jennifer L. Woulfe, St. Louis, MO, For Defendants/Respondents.

Sherri B. Sullivan, P.J. Mary K. Hoff, J., and Philip M. Hess, J., concur.

OPINION

Page 652

Sherri B. Sullivan, P.J.

Introduction

Kenneth E. Storey, Trustee of the Kenneth E. Storey Revocable Trust Dated November 13, 1998 (Storey) appeals from the trial court's grant of summary judgment in favor of RGIS Inventory Specialists, LLC (RGIS) and Nyra Campbell (Campbell) on Storey's claims for breach of contract and negligent retention and hiring. We affirm.

Factual and Procedural Background

On November 21, 2011, Mark Carleton (Carleton), an employee of RGIS, started a fire in the RGIS offices in a building owned by Storey and leased by RGIS.

On November 19, 2012, Storey brought suit for damages to the building arising from the fire, alleging breach of contract against RGIS (Count I), negligent hiring and retention against RGIS and former RGIS employee Campbell (Count II), and intentional tort against Carleton (Count III). RGIS and Campbell filed separate motions for summary judgment.

Facts related to the claims against RGIS

Prior to this incident, in April 2006, RGIS and Storey entered into a Lease Agreement (Lease) for the leasing of office space at 1707 Mount Auburn in Cape Girardeau, Missouri (Premises). On March 25, 2008, the Lease was extended pursuant to an Extension of Lease entered into between Storey and RGIS. The Lease was still in effect under the Extension of Lease at the time of the fire. The Lease included the following provisions:

7. MAINTENANCE AND REPAIRS BY LESSEE: LESSEE shall, at its own expense, repair any damages to the Premises, both interior and exterior, caused by the negligence or intentional acts or omissions of LESSEE, its

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agents, servants, or employees, ordinary wear and tear excepted.
...
9. FIRE AND CASUALTY INSURANCE: LESSOR, at its costs, shall obtain and maintain at all times during the term of this Lease with a reasonable insurance company, for the benefit of LESSOR and LESSEE as their respective interests may appear, Insurance on the Premises and any and all improvements which are now on or are to be erected or remodeled on the Premises, Insuring against loss or damage by fire and other hazards, casualties, contingencies and risks embraced with the term " extended coverage" in an amount equal to the estimated replacement cost of said improvements. LESSEE will carry Business Owners coverage ...

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