Property owners may face liability when they do not prevent reasonably foreseeable harm. Earlier this month, the family of a person killed in a shooting at Bay Area rental home filed a personal injury lawsuit against Airbnb and others. They charged them with negligence and premises liability because the vacation rental company should have known that there was underage drinking, large crowds and illegal activities at this property.
The mother and minor daughter of one of the five victims killed in the shooting, a 29-year-old male, fled the suit. They also sued the owners of the house where the incident took place.
Many rival gangs and at least three armed men engaged in the shootout at a Oct. 31 during a Halloween party at the property in Orinda, near Oakland and Berkley. Five other people received injuries from the shootings.
Approximately 100 people were at the party that was advertised as a mansion party on social media. Three guests were also injured attempting to escape. Two of these injured were hurt jumping from a balcony.
Two men were charged with suspicion of murder, conspiracy and illegal possession of guns and ammunition. One of the men was also charged with child endangerment. Party house rentals are now banned in that locality.
The property owners were warned several times about possible violations about violations of a local ordinance restricting the number of people allowed to occupy a short-term rental. Several neighbors also complained about earlier disruptive parties which included underage drinking in Feb. 2019.
In the lawsuit, plaintiffs charge that the defendants encouraged and promoted the use of the property as party house and should have known that this crime was likely to occur because of the parties and illegal activities that occurred at this property before. They also seek wrongful damages and compensation for loss of financial support and love and companionship and unspecified damages for the other charges.
An attorney can help seek compensation from property owners who do not take reasonable steps to protect their guests. Legal representation may help assure that these rights may be pursued.