SugarHouse Casino sued for not preventing gunpoint parking lot robbery

Jon Campisi Oct. 4, 2011, 6:56am

A Drexel Hill, Pa. woman has filed a civil claim against a Philadelphia casino for failing to protect her and her guests during a visit to the gaming hall after they were robbed at gunpoint.

Philadelphia attorney Michael S. Misher, of the law firm of Zarwin, Baum, DeVito, Kaplan, Schaer & Toddy, P.C., filed the personal injury complaint Sept. 28 at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on behalf of Soon Young Kim.

The defendants in the case are Philadelphia-based SugarHouse Casino, HSP Gaming LP, and SugarHouse HSP Gaming LP.

According to the lawsuit, Kim and her companions were getting out of her car in the casino’s parking lot Nov. 12, 2010, at an unspecified time, when they were approached by two men carrying firearms.

The assailants physically took Kim’s and her friends’ wallets and purses at gunpoint, the suit states. One of the men then grabbed Kim’s cell phone and threw it to the ground, presumably in an attempt to prevent her from calling authorities.

The lawsuit claims that SugarHouse should have known that the “property had a dangerous condition to the extent that it was located in a high crime neighborhood” within the City of Philadelphia.

It also states that the casino should have known that the property had a dangerous condition in that it attracted clientele who were participating in casino gaming and “would be particularly attractive to potential robbery while within the parking lot area.”

The suit goes on to state that the defendant should have known the property had a dangerous condition since “the police had been called to the casino itself and the immediate surrounding areas on previous occasions because of prior similar incidents.”

“Despite the aforementioned dangerous conditions … the defendants … failed to take reasonable measures to protect the safety and wellbeing of business invitees to the business establishment occupying the subject property and/or warn patrons of the dangerous condition of the property,” the lawsuit states.

The complaint alleges that Kim has been required to undergo treatment for psychological issues related to the gunpoint robbery. She has been prescribed medications, and has required “psychiatric assistance” and rehabilitative care to alleviate her conditions, all of which have required out-of-pocket expenses, the suit claims.

The lawsuit accuses the defendants of carelessness and negligence for failing to properly monitor the casino’s surveillance system so as to prevent criminal activity from occurring, failing to keep the parking lot in a “reasonably safe condition,” failing to adequately choose, train, direct, monitor and/or supervise its employees, failing to ensure safe passage from the parking lot to the casino, and failing to provide adequate security measures, such as posting a security guard or other security personnel in the parking lot.

For each of the three counts listed in the lawsuit, the plaintiff seeks judgment of no less than $50,000, plus interest and legal costs.

The non-jury matter is scheduled for a June 4, 2012 arbitration hearing.

The case number is 110903352.

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