Mr. Jeffrey Howard Todd, age 27, was in town for a job interview and staying at a Motel 6 when two men, Jimmy Teemer, age 17, and Lyndon B. Johnson, Jr., now age 23, entered Mr. Todd’s room with a gun attempting to rob Mr. Todd. Mr. Todd was also armed and gunfire was exchanged with one of the two men whereby Mr. Todd and Mr. Teemer died at the scene.
Mr. Todd’s parents filed a lawsuit against Motel 6 and its parent company, Accor North America, claiming that the motel had failed to keep the premises safe as there had been a number of holdups and violent crimes on and around the property. A Fulton County Jury agreed and awarded the Todd’s $ 5.1 million dollars for the wrongful death of their son.
In Georgia, an owner or operator of a premises has a duty to keep the premises safe for its guests and invitees. This includes, but is not limited to, keeping hotels, motels, shopping malls, apartment complexes, condominiums, and the like safe. The Plaintiffs (the Todds) in the case had to prove that there was a duty to keep the premises safe, that there was a breach of that duty by the Defendant (Motel 6), and that the breach caused damage to the Plaintiffs.
Under Georgia Law, as stated above, the Defendant had a duty to keep the premises safe for young Mr. Todd as a guest on the premises. In this case, the Plaintiffs were able to prove that the Defendant knew of the dangerous conditions of the premises and, therefore, breached its duty to keep the premises safe. The Plaintiffs furthermore showed that the breach caused damage to the Plaintiff which was the wrongful death of their son.
This is a tragic story, and my heart goes out to the Todd’s for losing their son. The Todd’s had a right to bring a wrongful death action in this case under the theory of premises liability, and to show that their son, only age 27, will now not be able to enjoy all the wonderful things there are in life to enjoy. As we all know, money never brings back our loved ones, but it will serve as a message, in this case, that it is imperative that owners and operators keep their premises safe for their invites and guests.
On my website, I discuss that the owner or operator of any public place has a duty to keep its premises safe for its guests and invitees. I have also stated that, although Georgia has historically been a State where it has been difficult to prove and obtain a verdict in a premises liability case, the tide may be turning.
For example, in one of my blog posts I talk about a woman who tripped over the speed bump in a condominium parking lot and later recovered a large amount of money as the jury was very sympathetic to her situation. There was also the incident at the Georgia Dome where the woman fell over a barricade and was injured, and she also recovered monetary damages.
If you or a loved one have been injured or killed on the premises of another, then we are experts in these types of cases, and I encourage you to contact us today for your free legal consultation at 770-865-8654, (813) 363-6664, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, by filling out the Contact Form on this blog, and/or Contacting Us through our website. We are here to help you and make sure that you receive the just compensation that you deserve if you or a loved one are injured or killed on the property of another.