Inadequate Hotel Security

Lawyer, George Patterson obtained a $75,000 settlement for a Baltimore, Maryland resident that stayed in a hotel in Georgia that was broken into by an intruder. The Baltimore man awoke to find the intruder looking through his wallet. The hotel guest successfully fought the intruder giving him a head wound and a bloody nose. The intruder fled the hotel room leaving behind his DNA and bloody hand prints. After the incident the guest realized that the interior door lock had been removed.

An investigation by inadequate security lawyer George Patterson revealed that the intruder was a hotel employee with several felony convictions that was issued a master pass key by the hotel.  The lawyer discovered that the hotel employee had removed the interior door lock from the room and disconnected the phone.  George Patterson's client fortunately escaped injury with the exception of bruised knuckles.  The inadequate hotel security lawyer pursued a claim alleging that the hotel security procedures for the hiring and monitoring of hotel employees was inadequate.

The hotel may not have known that the employee was a danger to the hotel customers but the hotel had a duty to verify that the employee could be trusted with a master pass key.  A simple background check would have revealed that the employee had several felony convictions.  In addition this particular hotel employee learned building maintenance in a program sponsored by the prison.  The hotel at a minimum had a duty to supervise the employee and not entrust this employee with a master pass key.

Claims for inadequate security have also been successfully pursued against night clubs, apartment buildings and other businesses where the business owners were on notice of the need to provide security.  Maryland does not permit a claim against a person or company for selling alcohol to a person that later injures another person.   This is based on series of Court opinions referred to as "Dram Shop" cases.  The Dram Shop cases typically involved a claim by a person injured by a drunk driver that attempted to recover against the bar that continued to serve drinks to the visibly intoxicated patron before they attempted to drive home. The legal cause of the injuries was held to be the intervening act by the customer to drive drunk.

The Maryland Courts have also recognized that dangerous conditions on business premises may arise, in part, because alcohol is being served to customers.  A business owner may be liable for injuries to its customers caused by its negligence if it had knowledge of the potential danger and the ability to prevent that danger.  This reasoning arguably could lead to clubs being held liable for one customer being injured by another drunk customer at events with a history of fights and assaults committed by intoxicated customers.  Rowdy and boisterous behavior by intoxicated customers is not sufficient notice for a business owner.  Aggressive and violent conduct by customers before an incident occurs may be sufficient to establish a duty by the business owner to protect one customer from another. 

If you or a loved one has been injured due to inadequate security or due an assault by intoxicated customer at a business please contact the inadequate security lawyers at Reinstein, Glackin Patterson and Herriott for a free consultation at 301-383-1525.  The office is located in Bowie Maryland near the intersection of Route 301 and Route 50 in Prince George's County, Maryland. 

Each case is different.  Past records are no assurance that our lawyers will be successful in reaching a favorable result in any future case.


The Bowie hotel security lawyers at Reinstein, Glackin, Patterson & Herriott serve clients in Prince George's, Montgomery, Calvert, Charles, St. Mary's, Howard, Anne Arundel, Queen Anne's and Baltimore Counties. Our clients are from Silver Spring, Upper Marlboro, Bowie, Forestville, Prince Frederick, Leonardtown, Annapolis, Edgewater, Rockville, Mayo, Bethesda, Germantown, Olney, Beltsville, Deale, Bethesda, Severna Park, Largo, Landover, Oxon HIll, La Plata, Waldorf, Crofton, Columbia and Riverdale.
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