A 30-year old man was found shot to death at the Royal St. George apartments on the evening of Friday, January 27, 2023. Law enforcement authorities are now looking for the killer.
Questions Remain as Police Continue Their Investigation
The condition of the still unnamed victim was reported by a caller who told police there was an individual, “possibly dead,” in a unit at the Royal St. George at the Villages Apartment Homes in the 1600 block of Brandywine Road. According to West Palm Beach Police Department spokesman Mike Jachles, police received a 911 call from a “hysterical person” at 5:43pm Friday. Local police and firefighters arrived to find a man dead from a gunshot wound inside a second-floor apartment at the three-story building.
Following an initial investigation of the scene, Jachles said detectives believe the killing was not random. The apartment, which appeared to be vacant, did not show signs of forced entry.
Potential of Wrongful Death Claim for Victim’s Family
Due to conditions at the apartment complex, the family of the victim may have a case for a wrongful death claim, due to negligent or inadequate security. Many questions still remain to be answered regarding conditions surrounding security at the complex. How could a killer access the apartment? Were locks on apartment doors insufficient? Did the property not employ enough security guards or employ other reasonable measures to keep residents and visitors safe?
Florida Property Owners Have a Duty to Keep Residents, Visitors Safe
Under Florida premises liability law, apartment complex owners have a duty to provide reasonable security of their premises to reduce the opportunity for criminals to engage in violent acts such as shootings, robberies, rape, or murder. When they fail to do so, and a violent act occurs that results in sever injury or death, the surviving family members may be able to file a lawsuit against the company for negligent security.
Key methods to secure a property include: security cameras/closed-circuit TVs, fences, guard gates, on-premise security personnel, and alert and attentive premises managers, owners, and workers. When an act of violence happens, there may be some burden of liability on the premises owner, because they may have failed to secure the property adequately.
Notice: As a personal injury firm, we frequently provide legal analysis and opinion on news stories in the hope that the family and friends of the victims may gain some valuable insight into our theories of negligence surrounding the available facts. Respectfully, our hearts and thoughts are with those who have suffered a catastrophic injury or death.