June 19, 2024 3 min read

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Wrongful Death Trial Begins over Patron’s Passing in California Casino

Allegations against security guards at a casino claim they restrained an unarmed patron who passed away as a result of their actions

Earlier this week, a state court jury in California heard the opening statements in a lawsuit alleging wrongful death at a casino in Bell Gardens. The incident dates back to 2022 when one casino patron, Jonathan Jung, passed away after being restrained by casino security at the Bicycle Casino.

Family members of the deceased patron filed the lawsuit, alleging that the casino security used an “excessive, deadly force” against the man, who played at a baccarat table before the accident. The plaintiffs described the case, revealing that on the day of the incident, Jung was playing at a baccarat table.

Terrance Jones and Minh Nguyen of Nguyen Theam Lawyers LLP, attorneys for the plaintiffs, who were recently quoted by Courtroom View Network, revealed that the deceased patron had a mental health crisis while playing at the casino. While playing baccarat, the man started talking to himself and hearing voices.

Subsequently, he was asked to leave by casino security. Jung allegedly left some $3,800 at the baccarat table and proceeded to exit the casino with the intention of driving off with his car. Although he wanted to leave, the man was allegedly detained by casino security in the parking lot.

The plaintiff’s attorneys claimed that Jung was subject to excessive force as he was restrained and held face down on the pavement. The lawsuit claims that one of the security officers placed a knee on the man’s back.

A few minutes later, the patron died. In their lawsuit against Bicycle Casino, family members of the man who died ask for $132 million. Per the attorneys representing the plaintiff, the sum represents $1 million for every second the man was allegedly suffocating while being restrained.

Defense Disputes Accusations, Claims the Man Passed away Due to Drugs

Not unexpectedly, the position of the defense in the wrongful death case differs from the plaintiff’s claims. Joshua Bordin-Wosk, attorney at Bordin Semmer Trial Counsel, representing the Bicycle Casino, disputed the claim that the deceased patron was hogtied. He also disagreed that Jung couldn’t breathe while he was restrained.

The defense claimed that the casino patron’s death wasn’t at all the result of him being detained. Instead, the attorneys contended that Jung passed away from methamphetamine toxicity.

According to Bordin-Wosk, the coroner who was in charge of the autopsy of the deceased man would testify, confirming that the sole reason for the person’s death was methamphetamine. Additionally, he said that the same doctor is prepared to admit that the detention of the casino patron didn’t contribute to his passing.

The casino’s defense attorney asked the jurors to retain focus on the autopsy reports and sworn testimony of the guards that detail the deadly accident. With Judge Patrick Madden assigned to the case, the trial may run through July 1.

Journalist

Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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