Stumbling security guard wants to settle suit with Metro

Thursday, June 10, 2010 at 11:17pm

Metro Council will decide Tuesday whether to award $69,500 to a man who was injured after tripping on broken steps at the Ben West building while helping General Sessions Court Judge William Higgins carry a box of the judge’s personal items.

The incident occurred four years ago. A Wackenhut Corp. supervisor directed employee Sam Glover Jr., a security guard stationed at the Ben West building, to help Higgins carry some boxes.

Glover fell on an outdoor staircase that had some missing bricks on the last step. He fractured his ankle and underwent three separate surgeries. Medical bills totaled $78,900, and Glover lost $8,380 in wages.

The fall occurred during the construction of the A.A. Birch Criminal Justice Building, undertaken by Ray Bell Construction. The company had been required to keep the exit passages of the Ben West Building clear at all times.

Glover filed a suit against both Ray Bell Construction and Metro. Ray Bell Construction paid Glover $60,000, while the Metro Department of Law has agreed on a settlement of $69,500.

“It is likely a court would determine Metro had constructive notice of the defective steps and failed to take corrective action,” an analysis from Metro Council Attorney Jon Cooper reads. “Given the substantial amount of medical bills and lost wages, the department of law recommends approving the settlement amount reached at mediation.”

4 Comments on this post:

By: govskeptic on 6/11/10 at 6:28

There was never a report filed about this accident. Does Mr.
Cooper of the Council and Metro Legal feel they would loose
every case in front of a jury or is there stats to show that they
normally do? Just maybe, there should be one or two attorneys
hired to the staff that can try a case in front of a jury
versus all being paper shufflers and "bargainers for settlements"!

By: budlight on 6/11/10 at 8:47

gov, I had a woman sue us because she "claimed" our rental unit she was visiting had faulty steps and she fell UP the steps. They were brick steps and we could see actual chisel marks. After 2 years of rangling, our insurance company paid her $129K (or maybe more); I screamed bloody murder. She was lying through her teeth. BUT the settlement was done because of it being a nuisance case. It was costing more to defend it than it was worth.

Bargaining and settling is sometimes cheaper in the long run.

I fell down a guy's steps recently. Got up; brushed myself off and said: "I know I have some balance issues and therefore when I got up ANY steps, it's a risk for ME".

I assured him that I was not HURT nor would I SUE him. IF I'm stupid enough to fall down some steps, I should pay. Now if he pushed me, that's a horse of a different color.

By: localboy on 6/11/10 at 8:56

Were these personal effects in the boxes the guard was carrying for the judge?

By: budlight on 6/11/10 at 9:00

localboy, does it matter? Everyone has business things in their office and personal things such as photos, coffee mugs, etc.