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Three Things Your Should Know After A Public Transportation Accident

Costa Mesa man -- one of our clients -- discusses ordeal after woman fell on him from 11th floor of LA hotel

About two years ago, a Costa Mesa man was waiting for a bus at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles. His plan was to meet some friends in Las Vegas.

As he waited, he didn't know that a homeless woman was trying to balance on a window ledge 11 stories above him. The woman fell to her death and landed on the man. He was critically injured, his spine badly dislocated, his right leg broken.

The attorneys of Easton & Easton, LLP, are currently representing the injured man, whose current and future medical costs alone are more than $16 million.

After four surgeries, the man still lives in constant pain, is unable to walk and is mostly bedridden. At least three more surgeries are expected, and one of those surgeries will involve fixing pins in the man's spine. Currently, he can only sit up right for brief periods of time.

How does an accident like this happen?

Handling a case as devastating as this one requires extensive investigative and professional resources, particularly when the victim is up against the legal resources of a large company or corporation.

For example, the owner of Crowne Plaza is Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG).

These are two major questions in the lawsuit:

  • How does a homeless person -- a person who obviously looks homeless -- get through a hotel's front lobby, go up into the hotel, search a number of hotel rooms and then find an open one?
  • How does this person then get onto the window ledge outside the room, which is above a designated valet area?

Issues of Liability

Our investigator found that the hotel's doors are faulty and can easily fail to lock properly.

In this case, after the woman had entered the room and security had been made aware of the situation, she apparently became scared and tried to hide. Still, hotel personnel were unable to enter the room in time to remove the woman. She had already gotten onto the window ledge. This issue of security not being able to access the room is also a matter of liability.

And why does the window of a hotel room open enough for a person to pass through to the exterior of the building? Moreover, why is this possible when the window is above a valet area -- a place where people have been told to stand and wait for their vehicles safely?

We know that the industry standard for a hotel window is that it should not open more than four inches, and this window opened enough to allow a person to get onto the exterior of the building, above the valet area.

ABC 7 News recently spoke with our client about his ordeal.

His life was changed in an instant -- for reasons beyond his control.

"It's like being in hell," he said. "There's only one dream for me and that is to walk again."

Our Practice

At Easton & Easton, LLP, we are committed to helping injury victims obtain the full and fair compensation they need and deserve.

For more on our personal injury legal practice, please see our overviews of the following topics:

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  • best lawyers | Best law firms | US news | 2016 Easton & Easton is honored to have been chosen anew each year since 2014 by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers as one of the "Best Law Firms" for the Southern California Metro Area.
    The National trial lawyers | top 100 trial lawyers Doug and Brian Easton have been selected as Top 100 Trial Lawyers for California each year since 2014 — honors given to less than 1% of attorneys.
    10 best 2015 Client satisfaction | 10 best law firms | American institute of personal injury attorneys Easton & Easton is honored to have been chosen as one of the "10 Best Personal Injury Law Firms” in all of Southern California" for 2015 based on client satisfaction — one of the highest honors we could ever hope to achieve.
    American academy of trial attorneys | Premier 100 2015 | AATA Doug and Matt Easton have each been featured as Premier 100 Trial Attorneys for California since 2015 — honors given to less than 1% of attorneys.
    super lawyers Doug Easton has been selected as a Southern California Super Lawyer each year since 2009, an honor given to less than 5% of attorneys. Matt Easton has been selected as a Super Lawyers Rising Star each year since 2014, an honor given to less than 2.5% of attorneys under 40 years old.
  • Multi million dollar advocates forum Brian and Matt Easton have each earned lifetime appointment to the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum — The Top Trial Lawyers in AmericaTM through the results achieved for their clients. This is an honor given to less than 1% of attorneys in the United States.
    Top rated lawyers AV | Av preeminent Martindale hubbell lawyer ratings Doug Easton has held the “AV Preeminent” Rating for over 30 years and Matt Easton received this prestigious distinction in 2015. The "AV Preeminent" rating is the highest possible rating for both legal ability and ethical standards, and is based on the legal profession’s oldest peer review rating system, dating back to 1887.
    10 best 2015 client satisfaction | American institute of personal injury attorneys Doug and Matt Easton were each chosen as one of the “10 Best” Personal Injury Attorneys in Southern California for 2015 based on client satisfaction, an honor given to less than 1% of personal injury attorneys — and Easton & Easton houses two of them.
    American board of trial advocate | Orange county chapter Brian Easton was selected to the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) in 2015. ABOTA is one of the most premier associations of trial attorneys and judges, requiring a certain number of jury trials as lead counsel and approval by a majority vote of the ABOTA board.
    The National trial lawyers | top 40 under 40 Matt Easton has been selected each year since 2014 as one of the Top 40 Trial Lawyers Under 40 for California by The National Trial Lawyers — an honor given to less than 1% of attorneys.
  • The best lawyers in America Doug Easton has been featured as one of The Best Lawyers in America each year since 2007. Best Lawyers lists attorneys who have earned selection through exemplary legal work that attracts the notice of their colleagues. Lawyers cannot buy their way onto this list.
    Avvo rating 10.0 superb | top attorney Personal Injury Both Doug and Matt Easton have been selected as Top Personal Injury Attorneys by Avvo with scores of 10 out of 10 based on their skill, experience, results, peer evaluations, and client reviews.
    Nations premier | NAOPIA | Top ten attorney | Personal Injury Matt Easton has been selected as one of the Top 10 Personal Injury Attorneys Under 40 in California for 2015 by the National Association of Personal Injury Attorneys — an honor given to less than 1% of personal injury attorneys under the age of 40.
    Avvo rating 10.0 superb | top attorney wrongful death Both Doug and Matt Easton have been selected as Top Wrongful Death Attorneys by Avvo with scores of 10 out of 10 based on their skill, experience, results, peer evaluations, and client reviews.
    National association of distinguished counsel | Nations top one percent | NADC Doug Easton was selected by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel as part of the Nation’s Top One Percent of Attorneys in 2015.
  • Attorney Cover Feature | Law firm of the month | 2015 Easton & Easton was featured in 2015 on the cover of Orange County Attorney Journal with an in-depth 5 page article about the Easton family’s success fighting for justice for their clients. Click here to read the article.
    Avvo Clients choice 2015 | Personal Injury Avvo Client’s Choice Award Avvo Client’s Choice Award (2015) — Based on client reviews and satisfaction, Matt Easton has received the Avvo Client’s Choice Award for 2015.
    W. Douglas Easton W. Douglas Easton Doug, the Managing Partner of Easton & Easton, has practiced law for more than 40 years and is chosen each year as one of the Best Lawyers in America and a Top 100 Trial Lawyer.
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    Matthew D. Easton Matthew D. Easton Matt, a Partner at Easton & Easton, has been selected as one of the "10 Best” Personal Injury Attorneys in California and the National Trial Lawyers’ Top 40 Under 40.
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    Brian W. Easton Brian W. Easton Brian, a Partner at Easton & Easton, is a member of ABOTA and one of the National Trial Lawyers’ Top 100 Trial Lawyers for California.
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