Son was beat up/assaulted by security guards in a nightclub. Did not resist and was hit with baton over the head causing a gash/concussion. Was charged with felony but later dropped. We are now trying to sue nightclub and security guard company via Civil Lawsuit. Current lawyer is saying that Double Jeopardy is intertwined and could hinder the lawsuit thus advising to not proceed. How is this so if DJ is to only be applied towards Criminal cases and not Civil. Please advise
1 Answer from Attorneys
The issue as stated is whether or not the guard(s) used unjustified force. If the DA dropped charges, then that means there wasn't enough to show beyond a reasonable doubt that such force was used. The DA's actions signaled to your attorney that the case was too hard to prove which probably caused your attorney to lose confidence in being able to prove the civil case. As a plaintiff, you have to prove more likely than not that the guard(s) acted wrongly. To do so, you will probably need independent witness(es) who are credible and will support your son's claim that the guard(s) used unjustified force. Without such witness(es), it will be hard for you to find an attorney who would want to take on this case. I assume that is why your attorney lost interest once the criminal case went away.