The definition of what can be considered negligent action on the part of a property owner is broad. This is something we touched on in a post back in January. Not only can North Carolina landlords be held liable for injuries to patrons caused by not taking reasonable measures to make sure premises structures are safe and sanitary, they can be held liable if security is lacking and injury or death results.
Legal action following the recent deadly gunbattle at a Twin Peaks restaurant in Texas, however, shows that the right to seek compensation for damages may not be limited to just victims who suffered physical harm. The first suit filed as a result of the shootout that left nine people dead, more than 18 wounded and some 170 people arrested has a neighboring restaurant seeking compensation from the Twin Peak restaurant operators.
According to documents filed with the court, operators of a Don Carlos Mexican Restaurant are seeking more than $1 million in compensation for loss of business. That’s because in the wake of the shootout businesses in the area were forced to close for several days as police conducted their investigation. Don Carlos and Twin Peaks shared a parking lot.
The suit accuses the Twin Peaks owners of gross negligence; not simply for allowing the members of five motorcycle gangs onto the premises, but encouraging them to come. The suit notes that the invitation was made despite police warnings that the gathering was likely to erupt in violence.
One thing that may bolster the suit’s claim is the fact that the Twin Peaks chain has revoked the franchising rights to the Waco facility, citing the franchisee’s failure to ensure security.