Beaumont Man Files Premises Liability Wrongful Death Claim

Wrongful DeathAndrew Teel, a Beaumont resident, has filed a wrongful death action against Sienna Apartment Homes, as well as its parent company and property manager, alleging premises liability and gross negligence in the death of his wife and newborn daughter in a shooting that occurred at the family’s apartment complex on June 6, 2017.

According to Beaumont police, Teel’s wife and newborn daughter were returning from a doctor’s appointment with the wife’s mother when they noticed a black Cadillac near the exit to the apartment complex. Teel’s mother-in-law, Mindy Morris, said that a man approached the vehicle, opened the door and opened fire. Teel, who was seven months pregnant, died after arriving at the hospital. The child, delivered prematurely, also died at the hospital.

According to the lawsuit, tenants at the apartment complex had complained numerous times to property managers about the high rate of crime in the area, as well as a number of security concerns. They say that the complex had a broken security gate, a collapsed fence and that security lights were not functional across the complex. They also noted that there were no security cameras or guards at the site.

Under Texas law, the owner/manager of residential or commercial property has a duty to take reasonable steps to minimize the risk of injury to anyone lawfully on the property. That duty has been held by courts in Texas to require that owners and managers take reasonable measures to provide appropriate lighting and security measures.
Police say one suspect has been arrested in the slaying, but that the shooter remains at large.

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