From a strictly legal standpoint Walmart may have prevailed this week in a case involving a customer who was murdered in its parking lot after a jury found the company wasn’t liable for inadequate security. Then again, the mere fact that Walmart had to appear in court to defend itself against charges stemming from a murder in its parking lot meant the company was a loser before the trial began simply because of the negative publicity.
Let’s be clear, the biggest loser was the guy who got murdered, Michael Born, an unfortunate fellow who was attempting to replace a headlight in the parking lot. Attorneys for the plaintiffs claimed that Walmart knew the store was located in a high-crime area, and that police were repeatedly called to the site. However, neither Walmart nor its hired security service, Wackenhut, took adequate measures to protect Walmart customers. Wackenhut, but not Walmart, was found liable and the jury awarded $1 million in damages.