Claims of negligent security form the basis of a premises liability lawsuit filed by an Illinois man who alleges he was sexually assaulted while showering at a Chicago gym.
The plaintiff, identified in the complaint as ‘Victim A,” filed the complaint Nov. 2 in Cook County Circuit Court against Capital Fitness Inc. and affiliated entities, claiming the defendants were negligent in their handling of security on the premises of the XSport Fitness gym where he worked out.
According to the Cook County Record, the plaintiff claims that, as a member, he was lawfully on the premises of the Capital Fitness gym when a perpetrator sexually assaulted him while he was taking a shower.
The complaint states that “Victim A” immediately told the defendants about the incident and learned that there had been several other reports of sexual assault by the same perpetrator, who had accessed the gym with a membership card that did not include a photo identification.
The alleged perpetrator was able to leave the gym, but managers took his gym membership card and told him they were contacting the police. The man was later arrested.
The plaintiff seeks an unspecified sum from the gym in addition to any costs and other relief the court finds appropriate.
Negligence provides the basis for most premises liability claims. Just because someone is injured on someone’s premises does not mean the owner of the property was negligent, and just because a property may have been unsafe does not mean that the owner was negligent by default. The plaintiff must demonstrate that the property owner knew or should have known, within reason, that the premises posed a safety risk and failed to take measures to remedy the problem.
According to the Cook County Record, “the plaintiff holds the defendants responsible because the defendants allegedly carelessly and negligently failed to protect patrons from sexual assault and failed to provide adequate security on the premises for patrons’ safety.”