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BikePedestrianLaneLocal News

Gwinnett County Police are reportedly calling on pedestrians to stay alert and use crosswalks after a recent surge in pedestrian fatalities.

According to WTVM 9 News, Gwinnett authorities report there have already been 11 pedestrian deaths this year, a steady increase from 7 last year and 5 in 2012. The majority of these accidents reportedly occurred after dark, between 8:00pm and 11:00pm. Several of these accidents took place along Jimmy Carter Boulevard, Singleton Road and South Norcross Tucker Road, according to Gwinnett County authorities.

Media reports allege many of these deaths may have been prevented had pedestrians used crosswalks and obeyed traffic control signals.

Our Legal Take

Advocates for cyclist and pedestrian rights at The Murray Law Firm find the media’s sole focus on pedestrian safety, rather than driver caution, a disturbing trend.

While pedestrians should always try to wear bright or reflective clothing and mind traffic laws, these fatalities should serve as an equally grave reminder to Gwinnett County drivers on the need to share our roadways with pedestrians and to city officials on the need to reevaluate pedestrian safety measures in these high-risk areas.

Why were the drivers in these incidents unable to stop, slow or swerve for the pedestrians in time? Do cellphone records, traffic surveillance footage and blood test results indicate whether distraction, speed or impairment were involved in any of these fatalities?

Given the apparent pattern of pedestrian fatalities along Jimmy Carter Boulevard, Singleton Road and South Norcross Tucker Road, what additional pedestrian safety measures, such as improved sidewalks, light-up crosswalks, caution signage, lower speed limits, and pedestrian bridges, have Gwinnett County officials implemented to protect pedestrians in these high-risk areas?

Should the drivers in any of these accidents be found at fault for distraction, speed, impairment or other negligence, the families of these victims may elect to file civil claims in their wrongful deaths. Claims of this magnitude would send a critically needed reminder to all Gwinnett County drivers on the need to share our roads with pedestrians and end distracted driving. Further, such claims would demand city officials finally improve pedestrian safety measures in these high-risk areas. Perhaps, through these legal claims, many other lives may be spared.

The Murray Law Firm works tirelessly for families devastated by distracted and negligent drivers and we offer our legal expertise, if needed. Anyone seeking further information or legal representation is encouraged to contact us at 404.842.1600. Consultations are free and confidential.

SAC EM Update

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SafeKids Worldwide is promoting a new safety campaign targeting child pedestrians. They are calling on communities around the globe to support improved safety measures, such as street lighting, sidewalks, crosswalks, and crossing signals.

The Murray Law Firm is proud to join parents, teachers and other pedestrian safety advocates in making our roadways safer for children. Having represented countless families through devastating losses and injuries due to reckless, impaired, and distracted drivers, we encourage all drivers to stay alert, particularly in and around school zones and residential neighborhoods. We also call on community planners and local officials to make both rural and urban streets safer for children.

Take a moment to watch this video of children from all over the world, asking us to help make their streets safe. A simple stop sign, caution light, crosswalk or crossing guard could save thousands of lives.

//www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xwj8umCHVWA

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The Murray Law Firm is taking an active role to curb a practice commonly known as “ambulance chasing.” In each of our blogs, we are informing our readers that, pursuant to the Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct, a lawyer or anyone acting on behalf of a lawyer may not engage a potential client “through direct personal contact or through live telephone contact.”

As a personal injury and wrongful death law firm, we have long been aware of the unscrupulous practices of some attorneys in this field who use unethical and illegal measures to obtain clientele.

SAC EM Square.jpgThe immoral practices of a few have, unfortunately, given rise to a public distrust of many. The term ‘ambulance chaser’ has become synonymous with a field of law, which at its best, exists solely to empower people over corporations and insurance companies, to serve those harmed by the negligence of others and to guide everyday citizens to justice through what is often a daunting and complex legal system.

We are saddened to acknowledge that some in the field have tarnished this noble mission through a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct, which is why we are proud to announce we are taking an active approach to ridding our community of those firms and attorneys that would harm the people and practice, which we care for so deeply.

The Murray Law Firm has achieved the Martindale Hubbell AV Preeminent rating, an honor achieved by meeting the highest ethical standards in our field, as attested to by judges and other attorneys who serve to better the practice.

In support of our commitment to high moral and ethical practices, The Murray Law Firm has founded the S.A.C.’EM Campaign (Stop Ambulance Chasing Ethical Movement), which is committed to rooting out lawyers who violate Rule 7.3 of the Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct. Together, with our clients, the State Bar of Georgia and fellow attorneys committed to the highest ethical integrity, we will fight to stop this unethical practice that has become an epidemic in the legal profession.

If you have been injured and have been directly contacted by a lawyer or an individual acting on behalf of a lawyer, please notify The Murray Law Firm at 888.842.1616 and we will assist you in reporting the lawyer or individual to the appropriate authority.

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Pledge DOT.jpgThe Department of Transportation and the National Highway Safety Administration are urging the public to take the pledge to stop distracted driving.

In tribute to all of our clients who have been injured or lost loved ones to distracted driving, we’d like to encourage Georgia drivers to take the Distracted Driving Pledge and make the roads safer for our families.

Have you already taken the pledge? Spread the word! The NHTSA is looking for your pledge on Facebook.

“Pledge like a life depends on it. Because it does.”–NHSTA

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Ungated Entry to Bradford Ridge Situated Across from Check-Cashing Store

Ungated Entry to Bradford Ridge Situated Across Street from Check-Cashing Store

Local News

Police are investigating a Bradford Ridge apartment shooting, which claimed the life of 33-year-old Florencia Gomez-Mendez Saturday, January 24, 2015.

According to Clayton News Daily, Mr. Mendez was shot in what appears to have been a robbery shortly after 9:00pm at the Bradford Ridge Apartments on Sylvia Drive. Mr. Mendez was reportedly walking into the apartment complex with a friend when a group of three men began walking behind them. One of the assailants apparently hit Mr. Mendez’s friend on the back of the head, striking him unconscious. Per media reports, Mr. Mendez suffered a gunshot wound to the chest. He later perished from injuries.

Authorities believe robbery was the motive for the attack. Police have not yet identified the three assailants.

Our Legal Take

As authorities continue to search for the three suspects, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether a fatal security lapse at the Bradford Ridge Apartments may have contributed to this tragedy.

Forest Park Crime Map (City-Data.com)

Forest Park Crime Map (City-Data.com)

Recent crime reports reveal a staggering number of robberies and assaults in the Forest Park community. What efforts were made by the owner and management of Bradford Ridge to improve security following previous incidents of community violence?

What property access controls, such as security patrols and fencing, are available to protect residents and deter crime, particularly given the property’s proximity to a check-cashing store? 

Given the recent history of community violence, The Murray Law Firm suggests it is possible the owner and management of Bradford Ridge Apartments failed in their duty to protect Mr. Mendez. Per Georgia law, apartment owners are required to protect residents and guests legally on premises from any foreseeable harm.

Should Bradford Ridge Apartments be found at fault for failing to provide adequate security to Mr. Mendez, his family may elect to pursue civil claims in his wrongful death. Claims of this magnitude, potentially in the millions of dollars, will demand the apartment complex reevaluate security measures. Additionally, such claims will send a gravely-needed warning to other local property owners of the need to make resident safety their first priority.

Photographs and a thorough inspection of the property will need to be performed immediately on the family’s behalf. The Gomez-Mendez family should retain an experienced premises liability firm without delay to ensure all evidence, such as surveillance footage and broken lighting, is preserved and their best interests are protected.

The Murray Law Firm has extensive experience in protecting victims and families devastated by security negligence and we offer our legal expertise, if needed. Anyone seeking further information or legal representation is encouraged to contact us at 404.842.1600. Consultations are free and confidential.

SAC EM Update

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Screen Shot 2015-01-26 at 10.08.39 PMLocal News

28-year-old Lawrence Jackson was reportedly shot and injured at the Macon Road Chevron station in Columbus Wednesday, January 21, 2015.

WTVM News reports, Mr. Jackson was pumping air in his tire at the Chevron gas station, shortly after midnight Wednesday morning, when he was struck multiple times in his lower torso. Mr. Jackson was transported to Grady Memorial Hospital for treatment.

LuAnn Davis Wood told WTVM news she was robbed twice while working at the Chevron station. Police have not announced whether robbery is considered in a motive in the horrific attack.

Our Legal Take

As police continue to search for the gunman, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether a potentially fatal security lapse at the gas station may have contributed to the shooting.

Have there been previous robberies on property and, if so, what efforts were made by the gas station owner to improve safety and deter future crime?

What security measures, such as bright lighting, surveillance cameras, and police patrols, were in place and working outside the gas station at the time of the shooting?

Given the alleged history of crime at the Chevron station, The Murray Law Firm suggests that it is possible the owner and management of the Chevron gas station failed in their duty to protect Mr. Jackson.

By law, Georgia property owners are required to protect patrons from any foreseeable harm. For example, should a property owner have knowledge of previous violence on or near property, they have a responsibility to implement extraordinary security precautions to protect patrons and deter future crime.

Should the Chevron owner and management have failed in this duty, Mr. Jackson may elect to hold them civilly liable for his injuries. Claims of this magnitude would demand the gas station finally implement adequate security measures and send a grave message to other local property owners on the need to make patron safety their first priority.

Photographs and a thorough inspection of the property will need to be performed immediately before any evidence, such as surveillance footage or broken lighting, is repaired damaged or destroyed. Mr. Jackson should retain an experienced premises liability firm without delay to ensure all evidence is preserved and his best interests are protected.

The Murray Law Firm works tirelessly to protect victims of property negligence and we offer our legal expertise, if needed. Anyone seeking further information or legal representation is encouraged to contact us at 706.494.2800. Consultations are free and confidential.

SAC EM Update

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Oak Forest Drive, Savannah

Oak Forest Drive, Savannah

Local News

26-year-old Jacob Grant was reportedly shot and injured during an attempted robbery at the Oak Forest Apartments in Savannah Friday, January 16, 2015.

According to WTOC News, Mr. Grant was in his Cadillac outside the Oak Forest Apartments when a gunman attempted to rob him. The assailant reportedly opened fire on Mr. Grant, shooting him through the back window of his vehicle. Per media reports, Mr. Grant managed to drive his vehicle from the scene and call police for help. He was transported to Memorial University Medical Center for injuries.

Savannah-Chatham police have not yet identified a suspect.

Our Legal Take

As police continue to investigate, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether a potentially fatal security lapse may have contributed to this horrific shooting.

How did the gunman obtain access to the property? What access controls, such as security fencing, gated-entry, and ID card controlled access, were in place and working at the time of the shooting? 

The shooting apparently occurred outside in the apartment complex parking lot. What parking lot security measures, such as bright lighting, surveillance cameras, emergency call boxes, and security patrols, were in place to deter crime?

Have there been previous incidents of violence on or near property and, if so, what additional security precautions were implemented by the owner and management to protect residents and guests from such crime?

As the details of this shooting continue to emerge, The Murray Law Firm suggests that it is possible the owner and management of Oak Forest failed to protect Mr. Grant. By law, Georgia apartment owners are required to protect residents and guests legally on premises from foreseeable harm. For example, should a property owner have knowledge of previous violence on or near property, they must take extraordinary precautions to protect residents and deter crime.

Should the owner and management of Oak Forest Apartments have failed in this duty, Mr. Grant may elect to hold them civilly liable for his injuries. Claims of this magnitude will demand Oak Forest implement proper security and send send a much-needed message to all Savannah apartment owners on the need to make resident safety their first priority. Perhaps, through these legal claims, many other lives may be spared.

Photographs and a thorough inspection of the property will need to be performed immediately before any evidence, such as surveillance footage or broken lighting, is repaired, damaged or destroyed. Mr. Grant should retain an experienced premises liability attorney without delay to ensure all evidence is preserved and his best interests are protected.

The Murray Law Firm has extensive experience in protecting victims of apartment violence and property negligence and we offer our legal expertise, if needed. Anyone seeking further information or legal representation is encouraged to contact us at 912.385.9690. Consultations are free and confidential.

SAC EM Update