Hospital Sued For Negligent Security After On-Site Murder
The family of a nurse has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the hospital for which he worked after he was gunned down by a colleague, according to a recent article. The colleague gained access to the hospital with an AR-15 and other weapons after there was no security situated at the front desk. He then fired on the victim, who was sitting at his desk at the time. The nurse’s access was not restricted by any backup security measures. The lapse in security has been called egregious by attorneys representing the family of the decedent.
The decedent had reported the nurse to his superiors and asked to be transferred so that he did not have to work with him. The colleague then came to the hospital in body armor and with loaded weapons and shot the decedent in the back. He used a U-Haul trailer to store the weapons and fled with the trailer attached. Police eventually caught up with the suspect and exchanged fire. Two police officers were injured in the attack. The shooter was also injured but survived.
The hospital is faulted for the security lapses that allowed the defendant access to the hospital unopposed. They were also faulted for failing to remedy the situation between the two employees before it turned lethal. This is essentially a negligent security lawsuit. The hospital would have a duty of care to ensure the safety of its employees. In this case, their failure led to the death of one of their employees.
In response, the hospital admitted that security failures played a role in the nurse’s death. They have since implemented preventative measures to better protect employees in the future. The plaintiffs contend this is a tacit admission of guilt and point out that several assaults and injuries due to lack of security did not result in changes that should have been implemented earlier.
Is the hospital liable for the damages?
Negligent security lawsuits are filed under a theory of negligence. Workers’ compensation immunity prevents workers from filing lawsuits against their employers. So why is this worker allowed to file a personal injury lawsuit?
The answer is that workers compensation only compensates you for accidental injuries that occur in the course of your duties. Someone shooting you in the back is not accidental. It’s intentional. Hence, workers’ compensation would not pay out in this instance which makes the personal injury lawsuit actionable. To prevent a worker from filing a lawsuit against an employer, the employer must show that workers’ compensation is the only remedy. In the event that workers’ compensation does not pay out, the worker is entitled to sue. Workers’ compensation does not pay for injuries sustained due to intentional malice. Hence, the worker is allowed to move forward with their lawsuit, for all the good it will do him and his family.
Talk to a Miami Personal Injury Lawyer Today
Workers’ compensation immunity does not apply to all cases of employment injury. In some cases, third parties can be held accountable and even employers under the right circumstances. Call the Miami personal injury lawyers at Payer Law today and we can discuss your lawsuit in more detail.