Three victims of the July theater shooting in Aurora, Colo., have filed a lawsuit against theater company Cinemark USA Inc.
In two separate lawsuits filed Friday in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado in Denver, the victims claim that Cinemark failed to provide adequate security to prevent the July 20 attack by suspect James Holmes, who allegedly killed 12 people and injured dozens after bursting into Cinemark's Century 16 theater in Aurora, Colo., and opening fire during a premier screening of “The Dark Knight Rises.”
One lawsuit was filed by Denise N. Traynom, who was shot in the buttocks, and Brandon K. Axelrod, who suffered injuries to his right knee and ankle, according to the lawsuit.
Other allegations against Plano, Texas-based Cinemark, which owns and operates Century 16, include failure to provide security personnel for the late-night screening and a lack of security and monitoring systems for exterior doors and parking areas, according to the lawsuit.
The suit also said that prior to the July 20 massacre, the theater had a history of violent incidents, including a previous gang-related shooting.
“Because of the amount of weaponry and ammunition, the gunman required time without fear of monitoring to transport the weapons and ammunition from his car to inside the theater,” the victims said in the suit. “Any person who wished to make a surreptitious and unauthorized entry into the theater could easily determine that the lack of security personnel and lack of any alarm on the door … would allow them to leave the theater, and re-enter without fear of being discovered, interfered with, monitored or stopped.”
A second lawsuit filed by Joshua R. Nowlan, who was shot in his right arm and left leg, contained similar allegations against Cinemark.
All three victims of the shooting are seeking unspecified damages for their injuries.
Cinemark did not immediately return calls requesting comment.
The shooting raises complex insurance coverage questions, as the company self-insures portions of liability coverage.