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Harrah’s Atlantic City Security Sued for More Assaults

Three more people have filed lawsuits claiming they were assaulted by Harrah’s Atlantic City security personnel. The suits come after Philly.com reported a suit by a Florida family against Caesars Entertainment, the casino’s parent company, for an alleged assault at Harrah’s.

Caesars Entertainment is facing three more lawsuits alleging that security personnel at its Harrah’s Atlantic casino assaulted individuals at the property without provocation.

Philly.com—the online site for the Philadelphia Daily News and the Philadelphia Inquirer—has posted video of two of the latest incidents, after first posting video stemming from another earlier suit form a Florida family that alleged they were attacked by Harrah’s security.

In the new suits, a New Jersey computer engineering student alleges he was the victim of an unprovoked beating by Harrah’s personnel. Richard Travellin, 23, filed suit in Bergen County court.

That brings the total reported suits against Harrah’s security to four including a mother and daughter from Florida and two Atlantic County cab drivers who say Harrah’s guards attacked them while on Harrah’s property.

Each of the alleged attacks was captured on video by Harrah’s in-house surveillance cameras. None of the posted videos have audio.

A spokesman for the casino declined to comment to the website, saying the company does not speak about pending litigation.

Travellin is a senior at the New Jersey Institute of Technology where he majors in computer engineering. His lawyer described him to the website as a “shy computer geek.”

On Feb. 24, 2013, he was waiting in line at 4:30am to enter Harrah’s Xhibition Bar when, according to Travellin, a security guard approached him and began yelling at him. Travellin says he was confused and put his hands up.

The website then described the altercation as caught on video, though some of the incident was obscured by other casino patrons.

The guard smacked Travellin in the head while the student’s hands were still in the air, the suit states. As Travellin took a step back, he was tackled and fell hard to the casino floor. Other guards came running to the scene and piled on top of him, “kicking, kneeling … and pummeling him” in what the suit described as an “egregious gang-like attack.”

Eventually, the guards handcuffed Travellin and escorted him to a holding cell.

“I feared for my life,” Travellin told the website in a statement provided by his attorney. “I’m really concerned about how violent they were.”

Travellin’s suit charges the Harrah’s and Caesar’s with assault, battery, negligence, false imprisonment, false arrest, and failure to provide a safe environment. It seeks unspecified punitive damages.

Photographs taken of Travellin two days after the incident show his face badly bruised, the website reports.

Travellin’s lawyer is also representing Andrea Binns, a 17-year-old woman who was visiting Harrah’s on Aug. 9, 2012 with her family when her father went to complain that their room keys wouldn’t open the door to their suite.

Surveillance cameras captured an incident where Harrah’s security jumped her father, John Binns, and later when guards pursued Andrea and her mother, Renee down a corridor and attacked the two women. Philly.com posted video of that incident.

Last month, two cabbies also filed suits against Harrah’s through a different attorney.

Jean Smith, a taxi driver said he was waiting for a fare on Jan. 10, 2011 when Harrah’s guards attacked him outside the casino’s front entrance.

Smith says the assault began when a Harrah’s valet accused him of cutting the line of taxis. He maintains that Harrah’s video shows he waited on the appropriate taxi line.

Smith said he tried to reason with the valet, but without warning a security guard pushed Smith up against his cab, he said. A swarm of more security guards arrived.

Casino surveillance cameras captured the entire incident and the video was posted at Philly.com.

According to the website, as Smith was pinned down by guards, another cab driver, Jean Eugene, pulled up and asked why his friend Smith was being hurt. When Eugene exited his cab, he too was set upon by guards.

The guards cuffed the two cabbies and led them to the holding area. There, they waited for police to arrive and escort them to the local hospital.

The website reports that due to injuries to his back and shoulder, Smith said he was unable to drive for three months and temporarily lost his taxi. The report did not say why Smith has waited until now to file suit.