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Crime-Ridden Gas Stations Must Compensate Crime Victims

The Kansas City Star recently published a story about “ugly” gas stations hurting neighborhoods. The article discusses how gas stations whose owners fail to maintain them in decent condition are causing problems for neighborhoods, including decreased property values and increased crime. The author suggests a number of solutions, including enlisting the help of neighborhood associations and reporting the gas stations to code enforcement.

Hurt at a Gas Station? Send a Message With a Lawsuit

The author overlooks another deterrent: a civil suit for damages. When a gas station has a crime problem that it knows or should know about and one of its customers gets hurt because of a crime, then the gas station is responsible for the damages. It must fully and fairly compensate the victim for any damages from their injuries.

Lawsuits Give Voice to the People

Although the primary purpose for civil suits for damages is to compensate the injured person, another very important purpose is deterrence. Civil suits are ultimately decided by a jury, and juries are meant to be the voice of the community. So, if you sue a gas station for compensation for an injury from a crime, the jury will ultimately decide what is or is not acceptable for a gas station. By holding gas stations accountable for injuries from crime problems, a jury is sending the message that in this community, we expect a gas station do something to prevent crime.

Gas stations are for-profit corporations. The language of corporate America is money. If you want to send a message to a corporation, you have to speak their language. If you truly want a gas station to listen to your message to fix its crime problem, you have to threaten their income with a civil suit for damages.

Take Action if You Are Injured at a Gas Station
If you or someone you know has been a victim of crime or injured due to unsafe conditions at a gas station, contact our firm at (816) 221-7555 for a free consultation and to learn how you can send a message to gas station owners. Beyond sending a message, we may be able to help get compensation for the harm.

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