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Lum and Cash Secure Unanimous Defense Verdict for New York City Casino

December 23, 2019

Larry Lum (Partner-New York City) and Joshua Cash (Partner-New York City) secured a unanimous defense verdict in Queens County, Supreme Court on behalf of New York City’s only casino in a lawsuit involving claims of false arrest and assault perpetrated by the security staff. The plaintiff demanded $500,000 for the indignity of having been detained by casino security staff for 36 minutes in what he felt was threatening environment, including being escorted to a restricted area where he was interrogated and allegedly subjected to an unreasonable search without his consent. Plaintiff and his cohort were abusing a rewards program and in direct violation of the rewards membership rules, which, however, did not expressly state that a third person was prohibited from using another account holder’s card, but only expressly provided that the holder of the card could not let someone else use it. Plaintiff seized on this alleged “loophole” to assert to the jury that he was wrongfully detained and did not commit a crime to warrant being “arrested.”  The plaintiff received a lifetime ban/exclusion as a result of his egregious conduct and was detained incident to the exclusion process. Four questions needed to be answered in favor of the casino for it to prevail; conversely, any one of the questions answered in favor of the plaintiff would have resulted in a finding of liability: Did the casino (1) have reasonable grounds to detain plaintiff, (2) detain plaintiff in a reasonable manner, (3) detain plaintiff for a reasonable time and (4) assault plaintiff by intentionally causing him to be in fear of imminent bodily harm or contact? The jury deliberated for approximately 35 minutes to answer these four questions against the plaintiff. Benjamin Greenfield (Associate-White Plains) assisted with trial preparation and work-up of the of the case.  

 

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