Family of Murdered Baltimore Woman Files $14 Million Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The family of Shirley Cooper, a 72-year-old Baltimore resident who was murdered at the Temple Gardens apartment complex, has filed a $14 million wrongful death lawsuit against ETG Associates and Roizman Development because of the inadequate security that allegedly allowed an intruder to kill Shirley on June 2.

The attacker stabbed Shirley Cooper multiple times at her home. Her son, Leo Cooper, found her body. No arrests were made and police in Maryland closed the case when their number one suspect was discovered dead. The $14 million figure was chosen to symbolize the number of times Cooper’s assailant stabbed her.

The wrongful death lawsuit claims that the intruder was able to enter Cooper’s apartment because of lax security. The entryway through which the murderer came in was not monitored and security cameras in the building were either not operating correctly or were improperly installed.

The owners and managers of apartment complexes, senior residents, hospitals, shopping malls, parking lots, banks, restaurants, cafes, grocery stores, motels, hotels, office buildings, and other privately and publicly owned premises are supposed to ensure that proper safety precautions are in place to prevent visitors, patrons, customers, or residents from getting hurt while on their premise.

Failure to do so can be grounds for a premises liability claim or lawsuit if someone is injured in a crime that was committed due to inadequate security—especially if the owner of the property had been warned of potential problems before the crime occurred. A wrongful death lawsuit may result if the crime victim dies.

Crimes leading to injuries that occurred on a premise due to inadequate security include robbery, physical assault, sexual assault rape, assault involving a deadly weapon, and murder. Stab wounds, gunshot wounds, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, bruises and scratches, sexual assault-related injuries, mental trauma, emotional anguish, and wrongful death are some of the injuries that can result in an inadequate security-related crime.

Family files $14M lawsuit over security,, November 15, 2007
Suing the Landlord: Negligent-security suits present problems of proof, causation, The Daily Record, December 9, 2007

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Inadequate Security: The New Liability Crisis

In Maryland and Washington D.C., the personal injury law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen represents clients in inadequate security cases, other kinds of premises liability cases, wrongful death cases, and other types of personal injury accident cases.

You need a lawyer who knows how to properly investigate and prove that premise owner’s negligence allowed the crime to occur. Contact Lebowitz & Mzhen today and ask for your free consultation.

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