security guard on escalator

When Are Property Owners Liable For Violent Crimes On Their Premises?

When someone becomes the victim of a violent crime, it’s normal for both the victim and their family to question how the traumatic incident may have been prevented. Holding the perpetrator criminally responsible is the top priority in these cases. But sometimes, violent crimes are enabled through the negligence of third parties. Holding these third parties liable is equally important, as businesses, property owners, and organizations have a duty to make sure their visitors are safe from reasonably foreseeable dangers. When negligent security measures allow a violent crime to occur, these third parties can be held liable for damages in a personal injury lawsuit.

Victim’s Family Sues YWCA Over Fatal Stabbing

The family of a 48-year-old woman who was brutally murdered with a kitchen knife at a Brooklyn YWCA in May 2016 has filed a lawsuit against the organization. The suit alleges that negligent security was to blame for the incident, in which a fellow YWCA resident stabbed the woman 80 times using a 6-inch blade. This was the first homicide in the 128-year history of the organization.

In the lawsuit, the family’s lawyer claims that the facility should never have allowed the alleged perpetrator into the property with the knife and that they failed to monitor security cameras or respond in a timely manner.

What Are Some Examples Of Negligent Security?

The circumstances behind the YWCA stabbing are common examples of negligent security. When staff members fail to adequately supervise their properties or prevent guests from bringing dangerous weapons onto the property and a crime occurs, the family likely has a strong case for a wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit.

Some more common examples of negligent security which can enable violent crimes include:

  • Lack of working security cameras
  • Lack of or inadequate numbers of security guards
  • Negligently hiring security staff with criminal histories
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Insecure or broken windows and doors
  • Security staff failing to properly monitor the property
  • Failure to warn guests of criminal activity in the area

Who Can Be Held Liable For Negligent Security?

In a city as large as New York, it’s always important to stay aware of your surroundings. However, it’s also important for all types of property owners and organizations to make sure there are no hazards on their premises which could facilitate a violent crime. All types of property owners and organizations can be held liable for incidents related to negligent security, including:

  • Owners of condos and apartment complexes
  • Owners of bars and nightclubs
  • Landlords of individual homes
  • Youth organizations who fail to prevent child sexual abuse
  • Owners of malls and stores
  • Parking lot and parking garage owners
  • Hotel and motel owners and management
  • Schools, colleges, and universities

When property owners fail to keep their premises safe and a crime occurs, the victim may be traumatized for life. And in some cases, families may be forced to grieve for a loved one who passes away after becoming the victim of an easily preventable crime. If your family is in this frustrating and tragic situation, our Brooklyn negligent security lawyers can help you find justice. Get in touch with us today to learn more in a free consultation.

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