Supermarkets & Restaurants Wrestling With More Safety Challenges Since the Pandemic
Grocery stores and restaurants have been spending more money on security, limiting hours, or even closing locations due to increases in crime since the start of the pandemic. Starbucks, for example, recently announced they were closing 16 profitable locations due to employees reporting incidents related to drug use and other disruptions.
How much has violent crime increased? Why is violent crime increasing? What should you do if you get attacked at a restaurant or supermarket? Can you sue the business owner if you get attacked at a supermarket or restaurant?
Here’s what you need to know about negligent security at supermarkets and restaurants and why you need an experienced negligent security lawyer on your side if you were attacked at one. To talk specifically about your assault, schedule a free consultation at SteinLaw Injury Lawyers today.
How Much Has Violent Crime Increased in Recent Years?
Murders have spiked nearly 40% since 2019, while other violent crimes like assaults and shootings have also increased. The annual murder rate across the United States (6.9 murders per 100,000 people in 2021) is higher than it has been since 1996 when it was 7.4 murders per 100,000 people.
It’s important to note that this high murder rate is still lower than it was through much of the 90s (America’s murder rate plummeted by more than half from 1991 to 2014), although the increase is still highly concerning.
Why Is Violent Crime Increasing?
Experts point to 3 broad explanations for why violent crime has increased in the last few years:
- The Covid-19 pandemic disrupted social services, schools, and other supports that help keep the crime rate down, while a broader sense of chaos and disorder may have fueled a “moral holiday.”
- Changes in policing following the 2020 racial justice protests may have changed how police interact with the public or encouraged some people to take the law into their own hands.
- People have more guns and are more likely to use them. Gun purchases spiked in 2020 and 2021, with guns bought in 2020 being used in crime more quickly than those bought in previous years.
What Should You Do if You Get Assaulted at a Supermarket or Restaurant?
Getting attacked at a restaurant or supermarket is terrifying and confusing, so you may not be thinking clearly after your assault. For the best chances of getting compensation for the injuries you suffered in your attack, take these steps after being assaulted at a grocery store or restaurant:
- Get immediate medical attention, even if your injuries seem minor. Not only will the medical records help prove you were actually injured, but your injuries may be worse than you realize.
- Take photos or videos of the crime scene, especially if you notice poor lighting, broken cameras, or other evidence of negligent security.
- Tell the store’s management what happened and file an incident report.
- File a police report so you have evidence of the attack and a chance of your attacker being caught.
- Contact an experienced crime victim rights lawyer and get a consultation. You may be owed compensation.
Can I Sue a Business Owner if I Was Attacked on Their Property?
While the person who attacked you should be arrested and held criminally liable for the injuries they inflicted on you, the grocery store or restaurant owner also owed you a duty of care to keep you safe on their property. If they failed to provide a reasonable amount of security measures that could have prevented your attack, you may be able to hold them financially responsible for your medical bills, lost income, and other expenses resulting from your assault.
You must be able to show the business could have foreseen your attack and taken measures to prevent it. For example, if you were attacked in a shadowy area of the parking lot, additional lighting may have prevented your attacker from feeling comfortable enough to assault you.
The experienced crime victim rights lawyers at SteinLaw know how to prove the business provided negligent security, so schedule a free consultation with us today.
What Is Negligent Security?
Property owners are required to take reasonable steps to prevent foreseeable crimes on their property. With the increased rates of violent crimes happening in and around supermarkets and grocery stores, these businesses should take measures to help protect their guests. Failing to take these measures results in negligent security.
Common examples of negligent security include:
- Inadequate or faulty lighting
- Broken, missing, or nonexistent security cameras
- Faulty gates or door locks
- Lack of on-site security (when the situation calls for it)
Why Do I Need a Lawyer if I Was Attacked at a Grocery Store or Restaurant?
Since business owners (and their insurance companies) will do everything they can to avoid paying you for the injuries you sustained on their property, you need an expert negligent security lawyer on your side to help ensure they pay you the compensation you deserve.
Even after you account for the lawyer’s fees (which you only pay if you get money), people who hire lawyers receive an average of more than 3 times as much compensation as those who don’t hire lawyers.
Contact the professional crime victim lawyers at SteinLaw today for a free consultation.
Contact a Florida Negligent Security Lawyer
If you were attacked or assaulted at a supermarket or restaurant in South Florida, schedule a free consultation with the expert negligent security lawyers at SteinLaw to discuss your case. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, lost earning potential, emotional suffering, and more.
We have locations across South Florida to serve you, so contact SteinLaw Injury Lawyers today.