Man at Iowa Casino Beaten by Another Customer Receives $1.7 Million from Jury4 min read
Not the way I would have handled the situation
This is precisely what transpired in the course of an event that took place in January 2021 at the Isle of Capri Casino in Waterloo, Iowa. As a very nice introduction into the matter at hand, I would like to say that resorting to violence as a response to a violation is almost never acceptable and A casino client named Montana Gunhus, who was 36 years old at the time, was granted $1.732 million by a jury on Monday for the trauma he endured after being assaulted by another patron. The money will come from the casino’s funds.
During trick-or-treating that took place last night, I gave each child the option of choosing two pieces of candy from a large bowl. A young lady in one of the groups selected her candies, and as she saw her family members and friends eat theirs, she announced to me, “I’m going to take three,” and then she proceeded to do so. I took no action in response to it.
It’s possible that I could have reminded her in a kind way, and maybe even in a stern way, that each person was only allowed two candies, but she was only a young kid, and I had plenty of candy; it just wasn’t worth it. To respond appropriately, one should not have grabbed her arm, shaken the candy out of her hand, or yelled at her. All of these actions would have been very improper. It’s only a piece of candy, and after, what’s the point of Halloween and going door to door asking for treats if you can’t indulge in some gluttony for just one night?
The fact that Gunhus was not wholly innocent in the scenario and that the case he filed was against the casino rather than his assailant Desmond Williams is an important development.
Testimony suggests that Gunhus discovered a players club card in a slot machine and, rather than returning it to the casino as requested, believed it would be a smart idea to use the card himself. Gunhus proceeded to spend $100 in loyalty credits that were on the card, following the “finders keepers” mindset that he had adopted.
This card belongs to Desmond Williams’s wife, as far as I know. Williams claimed that it had been lost, and the casino personnel was able to trace it down based on the machines it had been spent in, and they ultimately located Gunhus. This is the point at which the concept of a “acceptable reaction” comes into play. Instead of allowing security to do their job, Williams sucker attacked Gunhus from behind and proceeded to beat him senseless for 25 seconds while he was on the floor. Gunhus was knocked unconscious during this time.
Gunhus had facial fractures and lost vision in his right eye as a result of the accident.
Lawyers present their cases
Jordan Talsma, Gunhus’ attorney, alleged that the Isle of Capri casino was responsible because its workers failed to safeguard Gunhus by keeping Williams away while they dealt with the incident. Furthermore, Talsma said that no one intervened to halt the attack because the casino has a “hands-off” policy in such violent circumstances.
The casino’s attorney, Mark Thomas, said that Gunhus should have gone after Williams since he was the aggressor. He said that personnel did not separate the men because Williams displayed no symptoms of aggressiveness prior to the incident.
Thomas also dubbed Gunhus the “trigger for the entire affair,” saying he should bear some of the blame because he was the one who used a players club card that wasn’t his and basically stole money from Williams’ wife.
Of course, that final point is nonsense. Gunhus was clearly in error and should have either left the card alone or turned it in to the casino. He essentially stole the Williams’ money. BUT…Mr. Williams’ right answer was NOT to beat the s*** out of him. Gunhus should not have done what he did, but breaking his face and blinding his eye was not a just penalty.
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