Montlick and Associates Expresses Our Condolences to Newtown, CT Shooting Victims
Montlick and Associates would like to extend its condolences to the families of the victims of the tragic shooting rampage in Newtown, Connecticut that claimed the lives of 20 elementary school children and six adults. This terrible tragedy is a reminder that we are all potentially vulnerable to the irresponsible or criminal actions of others.
We often take for granted that we and our children are safe from the violent acts of others as we engage in daily activities like school, work and shopping. When commercial, residential or public property owners fail to implement reasonable security measures to prevent acts of violence, the property owner may be liable for the foreseeable criminal acts of third parties.
In the aftermath of a violent crime, civil liability and personal injury lawsuits may be secondary to grieving for those who are lost and to healing from one’s physical and emotional wounds. Nonetheless, many victims of violent crimes are family breadwinners that can no longer provide for their family. A violent crime victim may also face daunting medical expenses and long periods of disability from engaging in one’s occupation. These financial hardships cannot be ignored indefinitely, and the stress from these financial challenges can compound one’s physical recovery.
When a person is the victim of a violent crime because of inadequate security precautions taken by a property owner, there are complex issues that make it important to seek prompt legal advice. When the misconduct that leads to serious injury or wrongful death is a physical assault, rape or even a shooting incident, the perpetrator may not be in a financial position to satisfy a judgment. The legal term is that the criminal offender is “judgment proof.” This essentially means that there is no benefit in pursuing a legal claim against a prospective defendant because the defendant lacks financial resources to pay a judgment or settlement regardless of the fact that the defendant intentionally (or negligently) caused injury to another.
Because it is frequently the case that the perpetrator of a violent crime will lack financial resources to satisfy a personal injury judgment or settlement, negligent security by a property owner is often the best possibility for recovery in such situations. Property owners must take reasonable measures to prevent violent crimes on their property where they know or have reason to know of the possibility of a violent criminal offense on their property. The determination of whether a property owner should be aware of this risk of violent crime on his or her premises will typically turn on an analysis of past violent criminal activity on the premises and the immediate vicinity. While a locked security door to an apartment complex may be adequate in an affluent neighborhood with virtually no crime, armed security guards and surveillance cameras may be appropriate for ATM machines in high crime areas.
Our Georgia personal injury lawyers conduct investigations and analyze local crime patterns to determine if our client has a basis for a negligent security claim. Montlick and Associates is available to provide effective legal representation to clients throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.