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ARTICLE ID 21417

$________ Inadequate security at dance club/tavern situated on hotel premises - Plaintiff stabbed in parking lot - History of numerous prior incidents in parking lot and agreement between club and town that club would supply security guards in lot - Lacerated liver - Perforated diaphragm - Hernias - Plaintiff who owns small construction company unable to continue physical portion of duties.

Middlesex County

The male plaintiff, 25 years old at the time of the incident, was a patron at the defendant dance club/tavern, housed within the premises of the co-defendant hotel. The plaintiff contended that the defendants club/hotel and the security company obtained by the club negligently failed to place any security personnel in the parking lot, despite a history of some 25 incidents involving either fights in the parking lot or breaches of the peace that required calls to the police in the approximate two-year-period preceding the subject incident. The plaintiff also contended that approximately 1 1/2 years earlier, the club had entered into an agreement with the town in which the club would arrange for the stationing of four guards in the lot. The plaintiff contended that despite this agreement, there was no security posted in the lot.

The plaintiff contended that while he was in the club with his girlfriend, a fight started between the defendant assailant and the roommate because of attention the roommate was paying to the assailant’s girlfriend.

The evidence disclosed that the club’s bouncers ejected the assailant.

The plaintiff contended that when he and his roommate left approximately 1/2 hour later, the assailant was lying in wait for them. The plaintiff maintained that an altercation commenced and that he was stabbed in the chest.

The plaintiff contended that in light of the history and the agreement with the town, the failure to post guards was clearly negligent. The plaintiff would have argued that if security had been stationed in the lot, the stabbing would not have occurred.

The security company maintained that they were not apprised of the agreement between the town and the club and the plaintiff’s security expert contended that as a professional security service, this defendant should have made its own assessment and recognized that additional security was needed. The defendants also contended that the liability should rest with the defendant assailant. The plaintiff countered that in view of the extensive history of violence in the parking lot, the defendant’s club, security company and hotel should not be permitted to escape responsibility by placing blame on the assailant. The defendants also maintained that the plaintiff was comparatively negligent in light of his awareness of the potential danger. The plaintiff countered that he was not aware that the assailant was carrying a knife. The plaintiff was stabbed in the chest and suffered a perforated diaphragm and a lacerated liver. The plaintiff underwent two surgeries that night, an additional liver surgery approximately three months later and two subsequent laparoscopic hernia repairs because of weakness to the abdominal wall associated with the injuries. The plaintiff maintained that he will permanently remain at some risk for hernias.

The plaintiff, who owns a small construction company, contended that he formerly had engaged in a significant amount of physical work.

The plaintiff maintained that he can no longer do so and must rely upon additional employees.

The case settled prior to trial for $________, including $________ from the club, $________ from the security company and $________ from the hotel.

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