Lack of security at a nightclub bathroom led to a brutal sexual assault, leading jurors to award a $5.4 million verdict against the nightclub. Now, that verdict has been affirmed by a California appellate court, illustrating the way in which a business can be held responsible for failure to protect patrons against third-party violent crimes.
In this case, Janice H. v. 696 North Robertson, the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District, Division Three, Hollywood producer plaintiff, 37, had consumed several drinks at other nightclubs before entering this one to meet some friends, grab a drink of water and use the restroom.
However, when plaintiff entered the unisex bathroom, a man unknown to her – later identified as a staffer at the club – followed behind her and proceeded to sexually assault her. Continue reading →