West Palm Beach Negligent Security Attorney
If you become injured in a bar or nightclub due to another party’s aggression, they may not be the only party held responsible for paying damages to you. Business owners have an obligation to uphold their duty of care, which means they must provide a safe environment for all those who enter, also called “invitees.” If an invitee becomes harmed in an attack or fight of some kind, that they did not initiate, not only will the aggressor be held liable, the business owner can be too, if their premises is found to be unfit.
What Does Negligent Security Entail and How Does it Happen?
Not all premises liability cases involve in accidental slip and falls. If a business does not take the necessary precautions to protect their clients from certain crimes, that business owner may be held accountable. One may think that the responsibility should fall solely on the shoulders of the individual that committed the crime, but the law does not always see it that way. Business owners know that by reducing spending on bouncers, adequate lighting, and other security measures, that they are increasing the likelihood of crime taking place on their property.
Negligent Security that Results in Robberies in West Palm Beach
Negligent security can result in a variety of types of robbery, such as strong arm robbery (a robbery without the use of a deadly weapon), armed robbery (a robbery with a deadly weapon), and larceny (a robbery that involves no personal contact). Luckily, robberies have been on a slight downward trend for the past couple years in Palm Beach County, according to Sun Sentinel. There were 1,693 robberies in Palm Beach County in 2014.
Negligent Security that Results in Assault in West Palm Beach
Business must also take precautions to make their premises safe from individual assault, such as bar fights and even murder. There were 78 murders in Palm Beach County in 2014, representing a rise from the past two years of 74 per year in 2013 and 2012.
Negligent Security that Results in Sexual Assault in West Palm Beach
And, of course, sexual assault is the biggest concern when creating a safe environment for invitees, as sexual assault is still currently the most prevalent serious crime that occurs on a daily basis. According to the Florida Statistical Analysis Center, in 2007 there were 6,145 forcible rapes, 1,402 cases of forcible sodomy, 3,667 cases of forcible fondling, and a total of 11,214 reported sexual offense, yet only 3,064 arrests were made for forcible sex offenses. Furthermore, thousands more cases go completely unreported. Seventeen percent of Florida women have been raped at one time in their lives, which is one in six, or a total of 1,266,000. Business have an obligation to help prevent these tragic events from happening, and by standing by without taking actions to stop them from happening, such as keeping a poorly lit parking garage.
Security Measures Need to be Taken by Business Owners
Business owners and property owners have a legal duty to keep their premises reasonably safe for visitors and patrons. This duty not only refers to keeping the physical condition of the building in safe order but also to ensuring that proper security measures are in place to prevent criminal assaults from occurring on the property. Security measures may include bouncers, security guards, cameras, locks and key-card entry, adequate lighting, among many others. If a business fails to have adequate security, patrons and visitors may be the victims of bar fights, shootings, stabbings, sexual assault or other attacks that result in serious injury. Contact our West Palm Beach Negligent Security attorneys today.
The following are types of properties that should have proper security measures:
- Bars and nightclubs
- Shopping malls
- Parking garages and lots
- Community centers
- Schools and colleges
- Apartment and condo complexes
- Hotels and resorts
- Cruise ships
- Sports arenas
Establishments should increase security if they know there is a chance for patrons to become intoxicated and unruly. If owners fail to provide adequate security, they should be held fully liable for the losses of any victims of assaults or crimes.
Damages In Negligent Security Cases
Victims of violent crimes often suffer serious physical injuries including serious contusions, lacerations, fractures, traumatic brain injury, and more. These injuries can require extensive medical treatment, especially if the assault involved a knife or firearm. Treatment may include emergency trauma care, surgeries, hospitalization, rehabilitative therapy, and more. Some victims may sustain permanent disabilities, especially if they suffered a gunshot or stabbing to the head or neck area, causing severe damage to the brain or spine. Not only can treatment be costly, but victims often sustain further financial losses if they are unable to work during their recovery.
In addition to severe physical injuries, violent crime victims often suffer significant emotional distress and may develop a serious psychological condition called post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Though PTS is regularly associated with active duty military members in war zones, the condition can develop in anyone who has been subject to a traumatic occurrence that either caused or threatened serious physical injury, such as an assault. PTSD can be debilitating and can cause a victim to be unreasonably fearful, anxious, depressed, withdrawn, angry, and many more symptoms that can make even everyday life difficult. Victims of assault due to negligent security not only have the right to recover for physical injuries, but also for emotional distress and the cost of any psychological treatment needed.
Discuss Your Case With An Experienced West Palm Beach Negligent Security Attorney Today
If you have been the victim of a bar fight, stabbing, shooting, or any other type of violent assault because a business failed to have necessary security measures in place, you deserve to hold the owner of the establishment accountable for their actions. Victims of assault or sexual assault often incur substantial losses and the attorneys at the West Palm Beach law office of Pike & Lustig, LLP are committed to standing up for the rights of victims to fully recover. We handle your case in an efficient manner and navigate the legal process on your behalf so that you can focus on your physical and psychological recovery. Please call our West Palm Beach negligent security attorneys for a free and confidential consultation at 561-291-8298 today.