Victim Wins $1 Billion in Negligent Security Case
A jury recently awarded a record-breaking $1 billion in compensation to a victim who was raped at an apartment complex by a man hired as a security guard to protect the property. According to a May 25, 2018 report from Biloxi’s ABC affiliate WLOX, the girl was only 14 years old when she and a friend were approached by the armed offender. Shortly after the attack, he pleaded guilty to the criminal charges and is currently serving a 20-year sentence for his crimes. The victim’s mother filed a negligent security lawsuit in 2015 against the company that employed the man, alleging that he should never have been hired as a security guard. The judge presiding in the case had already determined that the company was liable, and the matter of determining damages was turned over to the jury.
If you were hurt under similar circumstances, you do have rights. Discuss your situation with a Mississippi negligent security attorney, and check out some answers to common questions about these cases.
What’s the Basis for a Negligent Security Case?
Negligent security is a type of personal injury case that allows a victim to recover compensation for losses resulting from criminal or other violent activities on property. The basic principles of premises liability apply, and a critical factor in this type of claim is breach of duty. Property owners have a duty to keep the premises safe for those who enter upon it; the failure to provide reasonable security measures and protect visitors from foreseeable crimes may be a breach of this duty. The assumption is that criminal activities and violence could have been prevented or made less likely by implementing proper security strategies.
When is Criminal Activity Considered Reasonably Foreseeable?
The key in proving a claim for negligent security is that the activity must be reasonably foreseeable, as property owners do not have a duty to protect visitors from unexpected hazards. In the case of the young victim, there was proof that the security guard had acted aggressively toward guests and tenants of the apartment complex. He also did not have proper credentials to carry a firearm while on duty. The security company that employed him knew of his violent tendencies and did not take proper action.
What are Some Examples of Negligent Security Measures
Every case is different, but you could have a claim for negligent security where the owner or occupier of property does not:
- Hire adequate security patrols during business hours or when guests are present;
- Install proper lighting in dark areas where criminals may lurk;
- Implement security features, such as locks, monitored entryways, and surveillance cameras; or,
- Restrict the ability of others to duplicate keys or keys to common areas, especially in residential apartment complexes.
Schedule a Consultation with a Biloxi, MS Negligent Security Attorney Today
For more information about negligent security claims and your rights under Mississippi law, please call 228-374-9787 to reach the Biloxi, MS Law Offices of Judy Guice. You can also visit our website to schedule a consultation and learn more about our personal injury law services.