In an interesting premises liability case, a Florida appellate court has upheld a $12 million jury verdict against a hotel for negligent security. According to the court’s opinion, Yaimi Guevara Machado was killed while staying at the Waves of Hialeah hotel after being locked out of her room. The killer, Ronald Andrade, was intoxicated and befriended Yaimi as she waited for her boyfriend to return to the hotel after he left allegedly to retrieve her cell phone from a restaurant.
According to witnesses, Machado was last seen heading with Andrade in the direction of his home, which was nearby. After her death, Yaimi Machado’s parents filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the hotel for failing to provide adequate security, which is a recognizable claim under Florida law. Her parents prevailed during a trial and received $12 million in damages. The Waves appealed, but the Florida appellate court upheld the verdict.
Negligent Security Claims
The hotel made many errors that night, including a refusal to unlock Yaimi Machado’s hotel room although it was locked with the key inside. The hotel also failed to recognize that the drunk Andrade posed a risk to her safety. Because of the hotel’s inaction, Machado was forced to wait outside for her boyfriend to return from the restaurant, though he ended up going to a strip club instead. It was in this state that the drunk killer made contact with Machado and lured her away from The Waves.
Every negligent security case is unique. The appropriate amount of security a hotel or other establishment must provide depends on the circumstances. In some cases, a failure to provide security cameras or guards will render a business establishment negligent. In other cases, refusing to remove dangerous people could also qualify as negligence.
Ultimately, a jury will decide whether the defendant used adequate security or whether it was negligent. This is why meeting with a Miami wrongful death attorney is beneficial. We can analyze the factual circumstances and determine whether you have a claim.
Has a Loved One Died in a Hotel or Other Business?
Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum Bluestein, LLP is well prepared to bring wrongful death cases against business establishments for violent attacks that claim the lives of loved ones. If you have lost someone close to you, please contact us today. Suing a business is often ideal since they have large insurance policies to cover any accidents that occur due to their negligence.
Reach out to us today by calling 305-371-2692 for a free consultation.