A Santa Monica jury recently awarded a female bar patron $5.42 million after finding that lax rules at a WeHo bar contributed to her 2009 sexual assault.
The woman is a 43-year-old news producer who says that she was in a unisex bathroom stall at Here Lounge when a club employee burst in and sexually assaulted her. The woman fled the club after her assault and was found a block away by a Good Samaritan who called police.
The Los Angeles Times reports that a jury found the bar 40 percent responsible for the woman’s sexual assault and found the bar employee 60 percent responsible. The bar employee disappeared after he was acquitted in a criminal case arising out of the rape.
Jurors rejected the bar’s claims that security guards patrolled the restroom and found that the club was negligent in allowing the assault to occur.
“This club turned a blind eye to sexual activity that was allowed to occur in the restroom area,” the woman’s attorney said. “Although they had a stated policy of security guards being present in the bathrooms, they weren’t present at the time of the attack. The guards abandoned the place where most problems go on.”
Another popular WeHo gay bar faces similar litigation. Two women sued the Abbey after allegedly being drugged and raped by club employees. Those women are seeking $10 million in damages.
The Dolan Law Firm handles personal injury cases throughout California. If you or a loved one has been injured due to the negligence of another, call us at 888-452-4752.