The California Court of Appeals for the Second District recently upheld a $5.42 million award to a plaintiff following her being raped by an employee in a West Hollywood club bathroom.
Defendant 696 North Robertson, LLC owns and operates a West Hollywood bar and dance club called Here Lounge. The defendant appealed from a judgment based on the jury’s award of $5.42 million in damages to plaintiff Janice H. for failing to use reasonable care to protect her from sexual assault in a unisex bathroom stall. The defendant claimed it did not breach a duty to the plaintiff and did not cause the plaintiff’s injury. Therefore, it maintained the court abused its discretion in erroneously admitting irrelevant and prejudicial evidence. Finally, the defendant contended that the jury’s non-economic damages award was excessive and punitive.