Articles Posted in Premises Liability/Negligent Security

Published on:

(WTVM)

(WTVM)

Local News

The Columbus community is seeking answers in the death of 33-year-old La Costa Williams, a father of five who was reportedly shot at the Booker T. Washington Apartments in Columbus Monday afternoon, October 27, 2014.

According to WTVM News, Columbus police responded to reports of multiple gunshots at the Booker T. Washington Apartments around 4:00pm Monday afternoon. Officers apparently discovered Mr. Williams suffering from at least one gunshot wound upon arrival. Tragically, he perished at the scene.

Family and friends are now celebrating his life as they mourn his passing. Mr. Williams’ sisters, Brittani Douglas and Latitta Norris, reportedly spoke with media about their loss:

“It’s hard for our family to grasp this situation, the kids have so many questions that we’re not able to answer right now. He loved his family, he did any and everything we asked of him. Just a great father, he’s going to be truly missed,” said Ms. Douglas.

Edward Powell worked with Mr. Williams at Diamond Kutz Barbershop and told media he will remember Mr. Williams as a “lovable” and “caring” father and friend.

The Booker T. Washington apartment shooting is the twentieth homicide to plague Columbus this year and a Neighborhood Scout crime analysis ranks the area a 4 out of 100 (100 being the safest). The crime in the area is apparently bad enough that residents of the B.T.W. community told media they are too afraid to speak out on the shooting for fear of retaliation.

However, friends and and family members are still hoping for justice and answers in the death of this young father.

“You not only tried to take something from a friend or brother of mine, you just also took his life from his kids,” said Mr. Powell.

Our Legal Take

As police continue their search for a suspect and motive, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether another party may also hold responsibility in this tragedy: Booker T. Washington Apartments.

Following prior neighborhood crime, what additional security precautions were implemented by the owner and management of Booker T. Washington Apartments to protect residents and deter violence? 

Was the gunman a resident of Booker T. Washington Apartments and, if not, how did he obtain access to the property? What access controls, such as a security fence, gated entry, security patrol, and surveillance cameras, were in place and working at the time of the shooting? How did these security measures fail?

Given the history of crime in the surrounding area, the family of La Costa Williams may be entitled to pursue civil action against the owner and management of the Booker T. Washington Apartments.

Under Georgia law, an apartment owner has a duty to protect residents from any foreseeable harm. For example, should an apartment owner have reason to anticipate criminal activity on their property through knowledge of prior crime on or near their property, the owner and management must take extraordinary precautions to protect residents and prevent future crime. Should the owner and management fail in this responsibility, they may be held liable for all injuries and deaths that occur as a consequence.

Claims of this magnitude, potentially in the millions of dollars, will demand the Booker T. Washington apartment complex finally implement proper security measures and send a gravely needed message to all Columbus property owners and law enforcement on the need to improve security measures and increase law enforcement in this neighborhood. Perhaps, through these claims, many other families may be spared such a tragedy.

The Murray Law Firm works tirelessly to protect 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

Published on:

(Fox Atlanta)

(Fox Atlanta)

Local News

Security at the Forest Cove Apartments is under intense scrutiny following the shooting of 1-year-old Rodrickus Robinson Saturday evening, October 25, 2014.

According to Fox Atlanta, 1-year-old Rodrickus ‘Junior’ Robinson was attending an outdoor birthday party with his family Saturday when gunfire erupted in the Forest Cove apartment parking lot. Family members apparently tried to carry the little boy to safety, but he was struck in the arm by a stray bullet as they fled the violent scene.

The young boy remains hospitalized, per media reports. Doctors are reportedly performing a second surgery in an attempt to save his arm.

Family and friends have reportedly organized a candlelight vigil to pray for the little boy’s recovery and to raise awareness of the ongoing violence in the Forest Cove community. Courtney Holt, Rodrickus Robinson’s mother, is calling for anyone involved in her son’s shooting to come forward.

Our Legal Take

Police allegedly made an arrest in connection with the shooting on Monday. While relieved a suspect is now in custody, The Murray Law Firm is questioning whether another party may also hold responsibility in the unconscionable shooting of this little boy: Forest Cove Apartments.

New Town Circle Neighborhood Crime Report (spotcrime.com)

Forest Cove Neighborhood Crime Report (spotcrime.com)

Crime reports reveal several burglaries, thefts and assaults in the surrounding neighborhood in the past month alone. What efforts to improve security were made by the owner and management of Forest Cove following previous violence in the community?

Was the gunman a resident of Forest Cove and, if not, how did he gain access to the property? What security measures and access-controls, such as gated entry, security fencing, bright lighting, surveillance cameras and security patrols, were in place and working Saturday evening to protect residents and deter crime? How did these security measures fail?

Given the history of violence in the Forest Cove community, The Murray Law Firm suggests that it is possible the owner and management of Forest Cove failed in their duty to protect the young victim.

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

Should Forest Cove be found at fault for failing in this duty, the family of young Rodrickus Robinson may elect to hold the owner and management civilly liable for his injuries. Claims of this magnitude, potentially in the millions of dollars, will demand Forest Cove finally take extraordinary security measures to improve resident safety in the complex. Further, such claims will serve as a much needed warning to other local apartment owners to improve safety conditions for residents. Perhaps, through these legal claims, many other young lives may be spared.

The Murray Law Firm works tirelessly to protect 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 404.842.1600. Consultations are free and confidential.

 

SAC EM Update

Published on:

Local News

Police have reportedly arrested a 30-year-old BNO Services caregiver accused of sexually assaulting a mentally disabled patient Friday, October 10, 2014.

According to the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, a staff member witnessed a female BNO Services caregiver sexually assaulting a mentally disabled patient. Police were called after the caregiver was allegedly seen placing a disabled patient’s hand on her breast while inappropriately touching his inner thigh area.

The accused caregiver was reportedly responsible for transporting the 51-year-old male patient to doctors appointments. Per media reports, she apparently announced her intention was to “calm him down.”

The caregiver is now facing charges. Investigators have not revealed whether the alleged abuse has been ongoing or if any other patients have been victimized under her care.

Our Legal Take

The Murray Law Firm works tirelessly to protect victims of assisted living facility abuse and negligence. While the firm is relieved to learn the alleged assailant is in police custody, they are questioning whether another party may also hold responsibility in this unconscionable assault: BNO Services.

What screening procedures and criminal background checks were performed by BNO Services prior to the caregiver’s hire?  What medical training and certifications did the employee earn prior to her hire? Were these qualifications verified?

What additional professional training did BNO Services provide prior to allowing the employee to transport and care for their disabled patients? 

Do company policies allow employees unsupervised access to patients? What monitoring procedures were in place to protect patients and oversee care? Are surveillance cameras in place both inside facilities and vehicles? 

As the details of this sexual assault continue to emerge, the victim and his family may seek to hold the owner and management of BNO Services civilly liable. Under Georgia law, care providers have a duty to protect patients from any foreseeable harm. This duty is paramount when serving physically or mentally disabled residents who may not be able to protect themselves.

Should the owner and management of BNO Services have failed in their duty to protect the victim of this sexual assault, they may be held civilly liable for his injuries and suffering. Claims of this magnitude, potentially in the millions of dollars, will, most importantly, demand the BNO Services reevaluate security measures, including staff screening, training and access to patients. Perhaps, through such claims, many others may be spared such unconscionable abuse.

The victim and his family should retain an experienced premises liability firm without delay to ensure all evidence, such as surveillance footage, is preserved and their best interests are protected.

The Murray Law Firm has extensive experience in protecting victims of assisted living facility abuse and 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