Supreme Court Sends Claim for Knee Injury at Palms Hotel-Casino Back to District Court

The Nevada Supreme Court has overturned a District Court decision in a claim for a knee injury at the Palms Hotel-Casino in Las Vegas and ruled that it should be re-tried.

Enrique Rodriguez was standing at the Sportsbook Bar in the Palms Hotel-Casino on 22nd November 2004, when an actress hired by the Palms Hotel and dressed as a cheerleader threw sports souvenirs to patrons of the bar during the halftime interval of a football game.

As items such as T-shirts, footballs and empty water bottles were thrown into the crowd, a female patron crashed into Rodriguez´ extended and stationary left knee – causing him to fall to the ground where he hit his head against the solid floor of the bar.

Rodriguez claimed that he had suffered knee pain, back pain, neck pain, sleep apnea, depression and obesity due to ingrown toenails as a result of the incident, and he made a claim for the knee injury at the Palms Hotel-Casino alleging premises liability and negligent supervision.

In a non-jury trial in April 2011, Clark County District Court Judge Jessie Walsh found in Rodriguez´ favor and awarded him $6.6 million compensation for his knee injury at the Palms Hotel-Casino which included more than $2.1 million for past and future medical expenses.

The Palms Hotel disputed the amount of the award and appealed the verdict on the grounds that Judge Walsh had excluded testimony by a security official about the crowd control that would have been favorable to the Palms.

At the Supreme Court in Nevada, a three-judge panel ruled that, although the Palm Hotel was still liable for the accident, the claim for a knee injury at the Palms Hotel-Casino should be re-tried at the District Court with a different judge, and without the testimony of a doctor who treated Rodriguez after the accident.