Employer not liable to girlfriend of shooter/employee where there was no showing of duty, proximate cause

Maldonado v. Hunts Point Cooperative, Supreme Court, Bronx County, June 29, 2010

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The Bronx County Supreme Court found in favor of AGF&J’s client in a negligent hiring, supervision, training and entrustment case, dismissing plaintiffs' claims on motion for summary judgment. The action, handled by Steven DiSiervi and associate Alexandra Rigney, involved defendant’s security guard, who had concealed his employer’s gun and took it off premises, to shoot the plaintiff in the presence of the infant plaintiff, before turning the gun on himself. During investigation, it came to light that the guard had attempted to shoot another girlfriend many years before. Plaintiffs claimed that the employer had been negligent, and the Court disagreed. It found no evidence that the employer knew that such a chain of events would occur. Moreover, the prior event was a half generation removed from the date of the assailant’s attack, had been investigated by the City of New York, resulted in a withdrawn claim, and was not repeated until the assailant’s second and final outburst. Thus, any knowledge the defendant had of the prior incident could not have given rise to a duty running from defendant to plaintiff.