Blaming the Plaintff

We have seen much of this story happen before.   Woman is raped at gunpoint in a hotel parking garage.  Woman sues hotel for negligent failure to keep premises secure.   Hotel blames woman for failing to exercise due care – how dare she assume that the hotel parking garage was secure.

What you don’t see very often is the response of the co-defendant franchisor – the Marriott International. This is from the Washington Post story about the litigation:

Marriott said it has pressured the legal team [hired by the insurance company for the hotel franchisee]  to withdraw the filings, saying in a statement Tuesday that it was ‘a mistake to suggest that the victim of this tragic incident was responsible for the vicious crime against her.’

"This incident is not reflective of our corporate culture or ethical standards, and we apologize to all of our guests and customers who were so deeply offended by the words used in the legal pleading," Marriott said in its statement.

Good for Marriott International.  And to the insurance defense lawyers for the franchisee, Stamford Marriott Hotel and Spa:  let us know how that defense goes for you.  My guess is that you just took a defensible case and turned it into a punitive damages case.  And, when you lose, you can blame on our outrageous jury system.