According to NYPost, police responded to the calls and found a teenager from Connecticut dead and her boyfriend injured at 230 Fifth Rooftop Bar, located at 230 5th Ave, New York, NY 10001, on June 28th.
Erica Lopez, 19-years-old was killed, and her boyfriend Andres Arias, 21-years-old was injured. The two were celebrating at the venue and began talking to a group of six men and women. Lopez said one of the women groped her and her friend. When Arias confronted them, an argument arose. The shooting was a result of this minor bar dispute. After leaving the bar, the group followed them outside, where the suspect shot at them.
The suspect, Ruddy Osias 27-years-old, allegedly released about five shots aimed at Lopez, Arias, and their friends. Lopez pushed Arias out of the way resulting in him only being grazed, but she was fully hit. The two were taken to Bellevue Hospital, where Lopez passed away.
Osias is in police custody. He faces charges of second-degree murder and criminal possession of a weapon. He has no prior arrests but faces a life sentence.
Attorney contributor Laurence Banville, an experienced violent crime lawyer, represents victims of violent crimes and their families in civil suits. In an interview, Laurence provided insight to help victims determine if they can sue for being shot at a bar.
We asked what the legal responsibility of a bar owner is to uphold the safety of their customers. Laurence replied, “bar owners must ensure the safety of customers; it is a legal obligation. Bar owners must provide security to ensure the safety of their customers; for example, bars should have surveillance cameras, security guards, or other protective factors.
Laurence said if property owners do not foster adequate security, they can be held negligent in a lawsuit. An example of negligence by a bar owner is if the crime was seen as foreseeable. A crime is reasonably foreseeable after a shooting if the property owner did not implement adequate security after knowing about previous criminal activity.
Laurence highlighted the legal options of victims of violent crimes when we asked the steps victims should take. Laurence replied victims should first acquire the services of a crime victim attorney. A victim may have a case if their lawyer can prove the crime was foreseeable, as described above. In cases where violent crime may be considered predictable, the victim and their family may have a claim.