Minnesota personal injury attorney Paul Peterson explains how an injured victim of a crime can use civil rights to get damages.
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The rights in a civil case when there’s been a crime committed against the criminal the rights are there to pursue a civil action for assault, battery, whatever may have been the intentional act that occurred. Unfortunately, the criminals rarely have the resources to respond to a judgment so you can get a judgment against them but it really doesn’t do any good. One area of practice that I’m very proud of our work that we do in this area is we have looked into situations where someone has been a victim of a crime and we found wait a minute, there was a security company that was supposed to be providing security on a property and they didn’t do their job. Or there is some other party that has responsibility to take steps to prevent the criminal conduct and didn’t do their job.
And so we look beyond the criminal to see is there someone else who has responsibility in this situation to our injured client. The circumstances don’t happen frequently. In most situations the law does not hold a third party responsible for criminal acts of another, but there are exceptions and sometimes it’s the employer of the person, sometimes it’s the security company. But whatever, it may be just a property owner who’s inviting people on to their property late at night and does not have an adequate lighting system or does not have appropriate measures taken to protect the people they’re inviting on to their property. These are things we look into and I’m proud to say we’ve been able to find situations where we could really help families devastated by crime and violent injuries.