The wesh.com website is reporting that U.S. Marshalls in Georgia have captured a 21-year old man accused of killing 23-year-old Antonio Jones at the Spring Manor Apartment complex in Ocala a couple of weeks ago. Apparently, Mr. Jones and the shooter got involved in some kind of argument that unfortunately escalated into a shooting, and subsequent wrongful death. As an Orlando negligent security lawyer who has represented many people who have been shot (and sometimes the families of those who have been killed) in the common areas of apartment complexes, the most interesting part of the story from my perspective is the fact that the Spring Manor Apartments was also the scene of a shooting/murder in July 2013. As should be well-known to any regular reader of this blog, apartment complexes are legally responsible for securing their properties, residents, and guests based upon what they know about crime on their properties, as well as what they know about crime in the areas around their properties. To me, having a shooting/murder occur at your apartment complex should tell the management at the apartment complex that something is lacking regarding security. It would seem to me that a reasonable and responsible management organization would take steps to beef up security. Such steps might include putting fencing around, and gates at the entrance of, the complex, and having more security guards patrolling the property and providing more of a visual deterrence. The senseless murder of Antonio Jones only happened 18 months after the prior murder. I have to wonder how much security was in place at Spring Manor on December 29, 2014. Evidently, not enough. If you have questions regarding an apartment complex shooting or negligent security case anywhere in Central Florida including Ocala, Orlando, or Winter Park, call Winter Park personal injury attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...Read More »
Who Was Responsible For Security In Orlando Nightclub Parking Lot Where 20-year Old Man Shot and Killed?
A 20-year old man was found by law enforcement lying in a pool of blood, dead from a gunshot wound suffered in a shopping plaza in the Pine Hills area of Orlando last weekend. The parking lot belonged to the Mandarin Plaza, a shopping center that features two nightclubs, the Scorpion and Santa Fe Nightclubs. According to the report, law enforcement is concerned that trouble that began inside one of the clubs spilled out into the parking lot. Importantly, it was also noted that this parking lot was the scene of a shooting just last year. What was not reported in the media story is the fact that over the last several years there have been a significant number of shootings and violent acts in various bars and nightclubs within just one mile of where this murder occurred. We know because our firm has been involved in representing at least two of the shooting victims and their families. It seems beyond belief that the people who operate these bars and nightclubs, and/or the property owners who lease these properties to the club operators, don’t realize how dangerous this area truly is. Businesses, and even landlords, can be held liable if their customers are victimized in ways that are foreseeable to the business operators and owners. In this instance, these business owners and property owners either know, or should know, that invitees get shot, stabbed, and otherwise assaulted in this area regularly. As a result, these businesses have a duty to take reasonable measures to keep the area reasonably safe for patrons. This might entail hiring security guards (or more security guards), enhancing lighting, installing video surveillance (or more, better video surveillance). If steps like these are not taken, and people get killed in these foreseeable attacks, businesses can be held liable for negligent security. It will be interesting to see how this story develops. Did one of the nightclubs in this plaza simply dump a bunch of angry, gun-toting, patrons on the sidewalk and hope that things would be okay? Did the shopping plaza have a visible security presence in the parking lot? The family of the dead 20-year deserves answers to these kinds of questions. If you have any questions regarding a potential Orlando negligent security case, call Winter Park personal injury attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...Read More »