VA Supreme Court rules innkeeper has duty to protect guests


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skidmark
April 3, 2006, 02:33 PM
http://www.courts.state.va.us/opinions/opnscvwp/1051094.pdf


The Virginia Supreme Court says that an innkeeper has a duty to protect guests from criminal acts, especially if the innkeeper had knowledge of prior criminal acts committed in or on the inn's property.

Although the VA Supreme Court continues to distinguish between innkeeper/guest and other business operator/invitee [patron] relationships, I can easily see that difference getting chipped away.

I think I'll fax a copy of the decision to the local mall's management office and let them know I'm coming there today. I'll ask them to send security out to meet me and escort me in from the parking lot, based on reports of robberies/assaults in their parking lots.

(I will also ask for an escort back out to my vehicle after purchasing and consuming my Mrs. Field's cookie and milk.)

Maybe the "no guns" signs will eventually come down when they realize the liability the have if they will not let me protect myself from problems they already know about and should anticipate recurring.

Anyhow, a cookie with milk is always a good thing to have.

stay safe.

skidmark

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WT
April 3, 2006, 02:40 PM
Sounds like the VA court is enforcing a 5,000 year old common law.

skidmark
April 3, 2006, 02:59 PM
Sounds like the VA court is enforcing a 5,000 year old common law.

Agreed, as that is exactly what the VA Supreme Court has said.

However, I see the potential for "duty to protect" to be extended, or in the alternative a significant challenge to the consequences of having posted a "no guns allowed" sign on business property.

I just got a reply back from the mall's business office thanking me for my correspondence and my continued patronage. Nothing about arranging an escort in from the parking lot.

stay safe.

skidmark

Trebor
April 3, 2006, 05:24 PM
Ok, something is screwy here.

Now the POLICE have no duty to protect me, but the motel owner does?

That means the police "To serve and protect" slogan is false and the new Motel 6 slogan should be, "We'll leave the light on for you...and provide covering fire."

eastwood44mag
April 3, 2006, 06:02 PM
+1 for Trebor.

Maxwell
April 3, 2006, 06:14 PM
Now the POLICE have no duty to protect me, but the motel owner does?

Heres a problem: Can you sue a cop for not saving you?

I believe that ruling to make is so officers are not held responsable for damages and loss of life was to protect the state. They've made people into easy victems, but now they dont want to pay for every mugging they couldnt prevent.

Hotel owners, thats another matter altogether! :banghead:

JohnBT
April 3, 2006, 06:28 PM
If this is the case I'm thinking of, the hotel had called the police about tresspassers and such about 100 times in a couple of years and still advertised that they were in a safe location.

This must be the case where the father was shot multiple times and the car was stolen with the baby still in it.

JT

Standing Wolf
April 3, 2006, 11:40 PM
Now the POLICE have no duty to protect me, but the motel owner does?

Government is always glad to require tax payers to do that which it refuses to do itself.

stevelyn
April 4, 2006, 05:02 AM
It'll be interesting to see what measures the innkeepers take to implement their "protection".

USMCRotrHed
April 4, 2006, 05:15 AM
I could be wrong, but I think what the VA Supreme Court was saying was if the private property owner forbids a common citizen from protecting himself (ie. signs not allowing a CCW on property) then the property owner assumes the responsibility of protection.

This is the reason Wal Mart doesn't have "No Gun" signs at it's stores. They do not want the liability of someone getting hurt and then suing the store because they didn't allow us to carry and protect ourselves.

JohnBT
April 4, 2006, 08:49 AM
There was enough of a problem that the manager USED TO have a late night security guard.

John

skidmark
April 4, 2006, 09:46 AM
I could be wrong, but I think what the VA Supreme Court was saying was if the private property owner forbids a common citizen from protecting himself (ie. signs not allowing a CCW on property) then the property owner assumes the responsibility of protection.

This is the reason Wal Mart doesn't have "No Gun" signs at it's stores. They do not want the liability of someone getting hurt and then suing the store because they didn't allow us to carry and protect ourselves.

I disagree. The VA Supreme Court clearly said there is "no common law duty for an owner or occupier of land either to warn or protect an invitee on his property from the criminal acts of a third party." On the other hand: " The special legal relationship between innkeepers and guests “had its origin in the feudal conditions which were the outgrowth of the Middle Ages. In those days there was little safety outside of castles and fortified towns for the wayfaring traveler, who, exposed on his journey to the depredations of bandits and brigands, had little protection when he sought at night temporary refuge at the wayside inns, established and conducted for his entertainment and convenience. Exposed as he was to robbery and violence, he was compelled to repose confidence, when stopping on his pilgrimages over night, in [proprietors] who were not exempt from temptation; and hence there grew up the salutary principles that a host owed to his guest the duty, not only of hospitality, but also of protection.”

There is an argument to be made that if the "owner or occupier of land" establishes ANY security that is not solely for the protection of his goods and property, he has voluntarilly established a duty to "warn or protect an invitee in his property from the criminal acts of a third party." Thus, if your WalMart puts in security cameras that cover the parking lot and uses them to report crimes, it may now have a "duty" to warn you about previously observed/monitored crimes committed by third parties who were legally or illegally on the property, or to actually protect you from the possibility of criminal acts of third parties. This argument needs case law to establish precedent, and to date I have not read of a case where it was presented in so precisely a manner.

In the meantime, many of us undertake our own protection.

stay safe.

skidmark

CypherNinja
April 4, 2006, 07:23 PM
... the new Motel 6 slogan should be, "We'll leave the light on for you...and provide covering fire."

::Pictures a M240 mounted in the window of a Motel 6 office, surrounded by sandbags::


LOL. :D :D

GruntII
April 4, 2006, 09:01 PM
Low those many years ago I stayed in a motel 6 while attending the academy. First night there was a 3 alarm shoot out involving officers, bangers and the local sheriff's air unit. The next night me and another officer came real close to having a full blown firefight a bunch of bounty hunters who slid up and threw the side door open on their van as we exited a pov in an attempt to grab the other officer. He double dribbled one and I covered the other idiots in the van. I believe to this day they are still wondering where the car 15 came from. Next night I was in another hotel. Kinda ruined me for motel 6 don't ya know.

Autolycus
April 5, 2006, 02:52 AM
The link is no longer working. Does anyone have a copy of the .PDF or can post another link?

And a big +1 to Trebor and Standing Wolf

TexasRifleman
April 5, 2006, 08:51 AM
Now the POLICE have no duty to protect me, but the motel owner does?

I don't have a problem with that as long as the same courts will toss out all cases that violate my Second Amendment rights to take care of myself in the first place.

I will trade my ability to call 911 for assistance in exchange for complete freedom to choose and carry my own protection.

JohnBT
April 5, 2006, 08:58 AM
The link is working now. I'd paste it, but it's 20 pages and almost 30k characters. JT

SSN Vet
April 5, 2006, 10:18 AM
for covering fire!!

The problem with the hole criminal justice system in the US is that it has become totally focussed on the rights of the criminals, hence the average murderer serves 9 years.....IF (and that's a big if) he's caught and convicted at all. And during that time he sucks huge resources away from society.

Case in point.....Zacharias Mausoui (spelled incorrectly I'm sure)
He wanted to plead guillty on day one of his trial......three years later we convict him! What kind of a pathetic justice system is that? Then his defense attorneys (whom he doesn't want representing him) go on and on about how the incompetent govenment agencies are really the ones responsible for 9-11-2001 and how poor little Zach had a mean ol' boogie man for a father. Then Mausoui get's on the stand and says..."I purposely lied to the FBI so that my 9/11 buddies could carry out their attack and kill as many Americans as possible". And all the media wants to talk about is how the mean ol' buggymen at DHS sent their lawyer to "coach" the witnesses.

But I digress...

So what do you get.....REPEAT OFFENDERS.....who have no fear of a system they've duped multiple times already.

Tell me what the recitivism rate is for those convicted of capital murder and executed in Texas?

Don't mess with Texas!! I wish the liberal northeast would learn a lesson from them.

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