Accidents Caused By Negligent Security

On March 31, 2011, Bryan Stow, a 42-year-old paramedic, was in the parking lot of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ baseball stadium after watching the Opening Day game with the San Francisco Giants. He was a Giants fan, wearing Giants gear, and was leaving the game with friends when he was brutally attacked by two Dodgers’ fans. After a brutal beating, he was so severely injured that doctors put him into a medically induced coma to save his life. He was left with lasting, disabling brain damage resulting from a TBI.  If you or a loved one have suffered an injury as a result of negligent security, contact an experienced Chaffin Luhana, LLP Pittsburgh, PA negligent security lawyer for a free consultation and legal advice, help.

Stow’s family later filed a negligent security lawsuit against the Dodgers and owner Frank McCourt, claiming the security was lax at the game, and that the Dodgers were partially to blame for Stow’s injuries. The plaintiffs added that it took 10-15 minutes for Dodger employees to arrive to help Stow.

In June 2014, the family won their lawsuit. The jury agreed that the Los Angeles Dodgers were partially liable for Stow’s injuries, though they absolved McCourt. The family was awarded $18 million—the Dodgers were ordered to pay a quarter of that, with the rest to be paid by the two men who assaulted Stow.

Public locations and business like hotels, restaurants, malls, and stadiums are required to ensure that occupants are reasonably safe. Those who are seriously injured while on these types of premises may be eligible to file a negligent security lawsuit to recover damages.  It is very important that you contact your Pittsburgh premises liability attorney for legal help in recovering the compensation you deserve.

What Is Negligent Security?

If a property is not properly secured and someone gets hurt, the property owner can be held liable for injuries or wrongful death. Negligent security refers to laws requiring property owners to keep people safe.

Places that are required to provide adequate security include the following:

  • Hotels
  • Apartment buildings and condominiums
  • Commercial businesses
  • Sports stadiums or arenas
  • Concert halls
  • Malls
  • Schools and day care centers
  • Parking garages
  • Nursing home abuse in assisted living facilities
  • College campuses and dorm rooms
  • Hospitals and medical care clinics
  • ATM facilities
  • Restaurants and bars
  • Workplace accidents
  • Cruise ships
  • Convenient stores and gas stations
  • Movie theaters
  • Airports
  • Train/bus terminals and subway stations

What Does Protecting Visitors and Tenants Involve?

Property owners are expected to take certain steps to increase security and safety for visitors and tenants. This is particularly true where there is a known history of crimes at the locations.  Sometimes, to save money, owners skirt their responsibilities in certain areas, leading to an increased danger for patrons. Examples include failing to:

  • Provide adequate lighting to eliminate dark, unseen areas where crime is likely to take place
  • Provide regular monitoring of the premises for safety breaches
  • Research the area and determine if it is a high-crime area requiring increased security
  • Install adequate security cameras
  • Install appropriate door locks
  • Install fences or gates to restrict access to the premises
  • Run background checks on employees and tenants
  • Hire a reputable security company
  • Establish appropriate security procedures
  • Upgrade old or malfunctioning security equipment
  • Repair faulty or broken locks, windows, doors, and gates
  • Warn tenants or customers about a known threat
  • Respond in a timely manner to a crime taking place or a call for help
  • Maintain adequate numbers of security staff
  • Hire properly experienced and trained security staff, or dismiss personnel with poor work performance
  • Properly protect keys or key codes
  • Provide adequate screening measures to block individuals with weapons from gaining access to the premises
  • Plan for adequate crowd control
  • Enforce fire and occupancy codes, as well as capacity limits

Common Negligent Security Claims

The types of events that typically occur because of a lack of proper security include:

When is the Property Owner Liable?

In a negligent security lawsuit, the plaintiffs must prove that security was lacking at the premises to recover damages from the property owner.

First, they must establish that the defendant was required under law to provide proper security measures. Laws concerning this vary from state to state. Second, they must show that the property owner failed to live up to that requirement.

If you or a loved one is injured while on the premises of a business or commercial property, it’s not automatic that the owner of that property is liable for damages. It must be proven that the owner was negligent in providing appropriate security—and that such negligence contributed to the injuries and/or wrongful death of the victim.

An experienced negligent security lawyer in Pittsburgh, PA can help thoroughly investigate the case, gathering evidence to support the assertion that the property owner failed to provide adequate security. Other entities that may be held liable include:

  • Lessor, lessee, or manager of the property
  • The entity which owned or managed the franchise
  • Vendor or contractor who installed or maintained the security equipment (if the equipment is found to be faulty or defective)
  • Sponsor or organizer of a public event, such as a concert, convention, or rally
  • Any security company or subcontractor hired to provide security on the premises

How an 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer Can Help

If you or a loved one was victimized, injured, or killed while in a public place, you can fight back. The Pittsburgh negligent security lawyers at Chaffin Luhana are ready to conduct a thorough investigation and can help determine whether inadequate security played a role in the incident.

Chaffin Luhana Pittsburgh personal injury attorney in Pittsburgh, PA has the expertise needed to guide you through the legal process to evaluate potential negligent security claims against hotels, mall operators, concert sponsors, and more. If you’re struggling with a serious injury or the loss of a loved one, we can help you obtain the compensation you need to try to put your life back together.

To find out how we can help you, contact us today.