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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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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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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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(WTOC)

(WTOC)

Local News

A fatal double shooting at the Campus Crossings Apartments reportedly claimed the life of one victim and left another injured early Friday morning, February 27, 2015.

According to WTOC, the shooting occurred around 1:30am Friday morning at the Campus Crossings Apartments on Lanier Drive, near the Georgia Southern University campus. Authorities apparently told media that one student was shot and transported to the hospital with injuries. A second victim, reportedly not a student, was killed in the attack. Campus Crossings is not part of GSU housing, though residents are primarily students, per media reports.

Police have not yet identified a suspect or motive in the shooting.

Our Legal Take

This is apparently not the first violent assault at the Campus Crossings complex. Media reports indicate previous assaults in 2009 and 2012. Friday’s fatal double shooting comes only days after police responded to reports of gunfire at the Campus Evolution Villages apartment complex nearby. Given the violent history on and near the property, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether a fatal security lapse may have contributed to this tragedy.

Was the gunman a resident of Campus Crossings and, if not, how did he gain entry to the property? What access controls, such as gated entry, security fencing, surveillance cameras, and security patrols, were in place and working at the time of the shooting? What apartment unit security features, such as alarm systems, deadbolts, peepholes, and security bars, were available to the victims?

How have the Campus Crossings owner and management improved security following previous incidents of violence on property? What emergency precautions, such as police patrols and resident warnings, were implemented by the owner and management following reports of gunfire at the nearby Campus Evolution Villages only days prior to this fatal shooting?

Under Georgia law, apartment owners and management companies are required to protect all residents and guests legally on premises from any foreseeable harm. Should an apartment complex have knowledge of previous violence on or near property, they may have a duty to implement extraordinary security measures to protect residents and deter future crime.

Given the alleged history of violence on and near the property, The Murray Law Firm suggests it is possible the owner and management of Campus Crossings failed in their responsibility to protect these two victims. If so, the families of these victims may elect to hold the apartment complex owner and management company civilly liable their injuries and wrongful death. Claims of this magnitude will demand Campus Crossings reevaluate security measures. Such claims will also serve as a gravely needed message to all Statesboro student-based apartment complexes of the need to make resident safety their first priority. Perhaps, through such legal action, many young lives may be spared.

Photographs and a thorough inspection of the property will need to be performed immediately on behalf of the victims before any evidence may be repaired, damaged or destroyed. Both families should retain an experienced premises liability firm without delay to ensure all evidence is preserved and their best interests are protected.

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

SAC EM Update

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Local News

A 43-year-old woman was reportedly assaulted outside a Columbus apartment complex Tuesday afternoon, February 24, 2015.

According to The Columbus Ledger Enquirer, a woman was attacked outside a Columbus apartment complex, near Gateway Road, shortly after 12:00pm Tuesday. Her current condition has not been released.

Columbus Police have not yet identified a suspect, leaving community residents concerned for their safety.

Our Legal Take

As police continue to search for the assailant, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether a fatal apartment security lapse may have contributed to this horrific attack.

February 2015 Northeast Columbus Crime Map (spot crime.com)

February 2015 Northeast Columbus Crime Map (spot crime.com)

Was the assailant a resident of the apartment complex and, if not, how was he able to gain entry to the property? What access controls, such as security fencing, gated entry, ID card systems, security patrols, and surveillance cameras, were in place at the time of the assault?

Recent crime reports of the northeast Columbus community surrounding the apartment complex reveal a staggering number of assaults, burglaries, and violent crimes. What additional security precautions were implemented by the apartment complex owner and management following previous area violence to protect residents and deter future crime?

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

Should the owner and management of this Columbus apartment complex have failed in this responsibility, the survivor of this assault may elect to hold the property civilly liable for her injuries and suffering. Claims of this magnitude would demand the property reevaluate security measures and send a gravely-needed message to other Columbus apartment owners on the need to make resident safety their first priority. Perhaps, through these claims, many lives may be spared.

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 706.494.2800. Consultations are free and confidential.

SAC EM Update