Plaintiffs were two young women who were going to a show in downtown Los Angeles. They decided to park in a large multi-story lot which advertised 24-hour security. They were particularly concerned about the security because they had come from suburban areas and were scared of the downtown environment. They parked their car and went to a show. When they came back, a security guard approached them and forced them back on the elevator with a crowbar and attempted to rape one woman while the other was able to get away after several minutes and seek help.
It turned out that the security guard was not, in fact, a security guard for the parking lot and that he was wearing a fake, but similar outfit. The parking lot and security company claimed no responsibility because they did not employ the “guard” and they would have had no opportunity to prevent the rape.
The law offices of Winer, McKenna, Burritt & Tillis LLP, was retained and through investigation and litigation, was able to establish that the guard had been at the parking lot for several hours. During that time, he had passed parking lot personnel and the real guards on a number of occasions. That the parking lot personnel and security company knew or should have known that he was not wearing the correct uniform; yet, nobody approached him all night.
After this case, the parking lot and security company changed their procedures to prevent an incident like this from happening again.
RESULT: Settlement for plaintiffs $500,000