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Spectator Violence: Can You Sue a Sports Stadium for Fights and Beating?

On behalf of The Law Offices of Howard Kornberg Posted in Premises Liability

Violent actions of sports fans in stadiums have been a long-standing issue dating back to Roman times.

Romans used to whack one another in the nuts while watching Coliseum battles, and folks got away with it. But times have changed.

While Romans didn’t have access to a proper court system that could protect them from injuries and damages, you do (thankfully).

In fact, the problem of spectator violence in stadiums was finally addressed in 2011, after a Giants fan was beaten at the Los Angeles Dodgers stadium.

The spectator violence incident finally drew national attention to the long-standing, nation-wide issue. The brutal attack left some baseball and football fans across California hesitant to attend sporting events, and for all the right reasons.

Following the infamous beating of the Giants fan, most stadium owners have beefed up security in stadiums to prevent such brutalities. And it worked, or so we were led to believe.

In reality, baseball and football fans are still regularly beaten in-stadium fights and violence, leaving them with injuries that range from minor (bruises, black eye, or damaged teeth) to severe (broken bones, concussions) or even life-threatening (brain damage).

Dodgers sued for negligence and premises liability for beating

One such brutality took place in October 2015, when a man was beaten and suffered a traumatic brain injury outside Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles after attending a playoff game between the Mets and Dodgers.

Last month, the victim and his wife finally filed a lawsuit against the team and his alleged assailants. In the suit, the plaintiff is accusing the responsible parties of negligence, premises liability, negligent hiring, retention and supervision, assault, battery as well as intentional infliction of emotional distress, and loss of consortium.

The couple is suing Dodgers and the victim’s alleged assailants for unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

Can you sue a stadium for premises liability?

So does it mean you can hold a stadium liable for the injuries and damages you get beaten within or outside its premises?

This is the answer only an experienced Los Angeles premises liability attorney can answer after reviewing your particular case, but in general: yes, it’s possible.

If your attorney can prove that the assault could have been prevented by the stadium’s security or owner, then your chances of obtaining compensation in a premises liability claim increase dramatically.

If you hire a Los Angeles premises liability attorney that can prove in court that the circumstances of spectator violence or assault in your particular case could have been prevented ahead of time, then you may have a bullet-proof argument to win a claim.

A premises liability claim may also apply if the stadium doesn’t provide proper security to prevent and quickly respond to violence taking place within or outside the premises of the stadium.

You may also hold the stadium owner liable for your injuries and damages in spectator violence if your lawyer can prove that the stadium’s staff has not taken proper measures of crowd control and/or failed to refuse to serve alcohol to overly intoxicated and otherwise dangerous fans.

A premises liability may also apply in Los Angeles in any of the following cases:

  • Fans sneaking weapons or cutting objects into the stadium
  • Inadequate placement of security personnel throughout the stadium
  • Little to no security outside of the stadium
  • Inadequate barriers to separate fans of different teams
  • No areas to hold arrested spectators
  • Failure to change venue if the event was deemed high-risk
  • Failure to reconstruct the stadium to control violent behaviors.

Other circumstances may also amount to a premises liability claim. If you were beaten in or outside the stadium, don’t hesitate to contact our Los Angeles attorney to learn your rights.

Call the Law Offices of Howard Kornberg at 310-997-0904 or complete our contact to get a free initial consultation about your particular case.

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