A fight can ruin a night out. Especially when you are injured by a security guard using excessive force. You deserve to be respected and treated fairly. A security guard who uses excessive force on you does not have the right to get away with it. And you shouldn’t have to work alone to get justice.
What Can a Security Guard Do?
Security guards and bouncers are supposed to maintain a safe environment for guests and employees for businesses open to the public. They are hired to be polite and cordial—not hostile—when interacting with others. Their specific duties are usually to:
- Patrol the property
- Identify potential risks and emergencies
- Respond to those risks and emergencies
- Call law enforcement or other emergency services
- Document incidents
What Rights Do Security Guards Have?
Security guards and bouncers are not law enforcement. They are ordinary employees of nightclubs, bars, and other venues. Legally, that means your rights and theirs are the same for self-defense, defense of others, and defense of property.
Under the law, a bouncer must show restraint when confronting you:
- He cannot use force to initially make you leave. As a representative of his employer, he can ask to you leave and call the police to assist him with that request.
- He cannot strike you first. As an ordinary citizen, he only defends himself, others, or property.
- He cannot escalate force against you. If you do strike the bouncer, he can only respond with “reasonable” force.
What is Excessive Force?
A bouncer’s “reasonable” force is typically equal to or less than yours. Restraining holds to break up fights and forcibly clearing space are generally not excessive, because they do not escalate force in a non-life-threatening situation.
Excessive force is a greater force than what the situation objectively calls for. Security guards and bouncers cross the line when they act in a manner that objectively does not justify the force. When a bouncer beats a guest into submission for not complying, that force crossed the line. A bouncer’s frustration does not objectively justify a level of force only appropriate for self-defense.
Therefore, when lives are not in danger, applying force that results in serious injuries is evidence of excessive force. If you have suffered major injuries that include the following after an assault, you may be owed compensation:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken bones
- Sprained muscles
Is His Boss Responsible?
When a bouncer uses excessive force, he owes you compensation. His boss does, too.
Owners of nightclubs, bars, and other venues have a duty to keep their guests safe. They become responsible for their employee’s violent misconduct when they:
- Failed to thoroughly investigate the bouncer’s background before hiring him
- Inadequately or inappropriately trained the bouncer in the use of force
- Neglected to investigate and correct the bouncer’s past incidents of excessive force
How Do You Prove Excessive Force?
If you want compensation from the bouncer and his employer, you will need to present a personal injury case for assault. Strong cases are built with evidence and expertise. You can support your claim with the following:
- Witnesses – Any person present who could account for how the confrontation began can offer important testimony that the bouncer’s actions were not objectively reasonable
- Medical records – If you suffered serious injuries that resulted in substantial medical treatment while the security guard did not, your medical records may indicate an excessive force
- Employment records – A bouncer with a history of violence helps prove his boss was negligent in hiring him or continuing to employ him
- Hiring a lawyer – The experience of an assault lawyer can offer you tailored strategies that address the unique facts of your case
Choosing Help from Your Lawyers
An assault is a crime. While a prosecutor decides whether to bring criminal charges against the bouncer, the prosecutor is not your lawyer. Prosecution is only one part of the justice you deserve—you need compensation for your injuries as well.
That is why pursuing a personal injury claim is What’s Right for you. Call Sam & Ash, LLP and we will discuss a strategy for your case, free of charge. Contact us! We are available day or night at 1 (800) 304-2000.