New York concertgoer sues venue for brain injury, sparse security

New York City is known to have one of the most active and innovative music scenes in the country, if not the world. This gives local residents the opportunity to attend a concert on any given night of the week. One New York man’s expectations for a spontaneous night of fun at a concert came to a quick — and unexpected — end.

A 24-year-old Brooklyn resident was asked by a friend to attend a show hosted by the electronic group Justice at the Hammerstein Ballroom. As the night wore on, the crowd became increasingly rowdy. In fact, one patron was able to jump from the balcony because there was not enough security to stop him. As a result of the two-story fall, the jumper fell on the Brooklyn man’s head and inflicted serious brain injuries.

Nearly a year after the accident occurred, the injured concertgoer has filed a premises liability claim in a Manhattan court for negligent security.

Although most falling objects cases involve inanimate objects, the underlying legal issues in this case are the same. Just as a property owner has a duty to take steps to make sure that potentially dangerous objects are secured and don’t fall on unsuspecting people, the management at the Hammerstein Ballroom should have made sure there was enough security at the concert. At the very least, efforts should have been made to ensure patrons wouldn’t jump or fall over the balcony’s rail.

Since suffering injuries at the concert, the 24-year-old man has had a difficult time recovering. Traumatic brain injuries and injured ligaments kept him away from doing any work for five months. Still, the man is only able to meet the demands of a part-time job because he has memory issues. A successful claim could help the young man gain access to resources that will be helpful in his recovery.

Source: New York Post, “Man sues Hammerstein Ballroom after patron landed on him in 2-story fall,” Julia Marsh, Sept. 30, 2013