A federal trial court ruled that Wal-Mart is not liable for injuries sustained by a female customer who was abducted while sitting in the store's parking lot and harmed later.
In 2006, a woman was abducted from a Wal-Mart parking lot in Kentucky. She sued the store for damages, alleging that the storeowner failed to maintain reasonably safe conditions and premises, and that this failure was the cause of her injuries. The woman based her claim on the fact that the store fired the security company that patrolled the parking lot two months before she was attacked.
The storeowner argued there was not a sufficient history of crime in the area that would mandate constant security surveillance of the parking area by on-site security guards. Though the store had recently fired the security company, the store utilized video cameras to monitor the activities in its parking lot.
The court held the storeowner did not owe the woman a duty to protect her from all acts of random violence and the woman failed to provide evidence that the violent attack was foreseeable to the storeowner. Therefore, the court dismissed the woman's claim against Wal-Mart.