Sexually Assaulted in a Mall Parking Lot...
A few days ago my fiance, her sister-in-law and her son were leaving a major chain retail store.
Apparently, in the cart somewhere between where the baby sits and their personal belongings (purse) there was a happy birthday daddy card that must have been there from the customer before (neither my fiance nor her sis have a father, they have both lost them at a young age). The card is only 2 dollars and they had plenty of merchandise in their bags that had been paid for.
The store's security guard dressed in street clothes stopped them in the parking lot and he kindly explained that they wouldn't be in any trouble because he was going to say they were friends. They walked with him to the back of the store and dropped off the card to a women employee.
He walked them back out explaining that they will just have to come back in a few hours to fill out paperwork and it would be resolved, so that's what they did. He also had taken down their names, addresses and phone numbers.
In 2 hours he called asking where they were and they explained they were right outside. He then told them to meet a few stores down because he could get in trouble by his boss, so they did. They went into the restaurant at the end of the mall and he called to say he was out front of the restaurant and to come out. So my fiance told her sis she'd go out and sign the paperwork while her sis got the food.
When she got outside he said, "let's just hop in the car and sign the paper because I don't want my boss to see me, I could lose my job." Then he asked her to pull further to the back of the parking lot just to be sure, so she did.
When they got to the back of the lot he pulled out a crumbled up piece of paper and then attacked her, sexually assaulting her as best he could while she fought back. He eventually stopped and got out of the car saying, "don't tell anybody anything or this will only get worse."
My question is, how much possible time could he face for this? Also, if you believe it's possible that he's done this before (because that's the belief of my fiance and her sis, what else could happen? What other helpful legal tips could you give me on whether or not a lawsuit is the way to go?
With that being said my fiance and I, along with the rest of our family, do not want this to be a big thing with publicity. She simply wants this man not to be able to hurt anyone else and to pay for what he's done. Thanks for the help it's greatly appreciated.
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ANSWER for "Sexually Assaulted in a Mall Parking Lot...":
Hopefully at or about the time of the attack your fiancé called the police and filed a complaint. Hopefully your fiancé or other family member contacted mall’s security as well. The sexual attack is a felony punishable by substantial prison time.
Because you didn’t mention in which state this sexual attack occurred we aren’t able to tell you exactly what the criminal penalties would be, but we can tell you with great assurance the crime he committed is major and subjects the attacker to substantial prison time.
If, in an effort not to have the issue publicized, your fiancé, you, or her family members decided not to contact either the police or the mall security you are all making a mistake.
It's certainly not too late, but if your fiancé hasn’t reported the felony attack yet she should immediately.
If the attacker isn't stopped he may go on to attack another woman. Your fiancé’s desire to avoid publicity should not deter her from proceeding against this attacker. Publicity or not, this man has to be stopped, and stopped immediately.
In addition, the mall management should be independently notified. The attach is civilly actionable. By that we mean your fiancé may be able to recover substantial compensation from the mall for the attack which was perpetrated against her.
Procrastination for publicity avoidance sake is the last and the worst thing that could happen. Act now, and act decisively.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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