The Case of the Abused Patron and the Ex-Cop
One of our adjusters was given a task assignment to investigate a claim of excess force and battery by security guards employed by the insured at a night club in the West Covina area of Los Angeles. The claimant, a patron of the club, had been removed from the premises but was claiming that the bouncers had beaten him up outside the main entrance and he had the injuries to prove it.
Arrangements were made for the adjuster to meet with the insured owners and the security guards at the club. Upon arrival he was shown into some offices off to the side whereupon several heavy set, tough looking men who looked like “mafia” types proceeded to brow beat the adjuster as he attempted to take statements. Intense suspicious looks interspersed with monosyllabic answers to the adjuster’s questions made for a tense atmosphere.
Nevertheless, the adjuster persisted and at the end of four statements was none the wiser as to how the claimant had ended up with a broken nose and three cracked ribs. “Omerta” [the code of silence] was definitely the situation.
The adjuster was almost ready to leave when another guard who had not been in the room but who had some knowledge of the incident approached him and asked if the adjuster would come into the bar area of the club and sit down as he had some information to divulge. It turned out that this person was an ex-police officer and upon finding out that the adjuster was also an ex-cop decided to come clean about the incident.
What he relayed was 180 degrees opposite to the other guards’ versions and so the adjuster was able to report the truth of what had occurred to the insurance company and the claim was settled accordingly avoiding costly litigation.