A 52-year-old woman was told by a judge that her weight, carelessness, and alcohol intake were the reasons she fell down a flight of stairs at a nightclub.
Hussein filed a suit against the club for thousands of dollars in damages, but the establishment was recently found not responsible for her accident.
The shocking part in all of this is the judge’s reasoning for not holding the club accountable. Judge Heather Baucher allegedly told Hussein that the fact she was intoxicated, overweight, and wearing high heels contributed to her unfortunate fall, along with the fact that she neglected to hold on to the stairway banister.
“In her inebriated, obese state on three-inch platforms, that would be an obvious, simple step for anyone presented with what they saw as a hazard,” the judge reportedly said of her failure to grab the railing.
“Mrs. Hussein, at 115kg (about 254 pounds), must have taken up much of the width of the stairway,” said the judge. “But for some inexplicable reason, she did not use the handrail.”
While Hussein maintained that she was not drunk after only having a glass and a half of champagne and a glass of red wine, the club’s attorney noted that hospital records from the night in question described her as “obviously drunk” and “intoxicated.”
“I find that the notes in the hospital records referred to her being intoxicated because she was so,” said Baucher.
Baucher also reportedly visited the scene of where the fall took place and determined there was nothing wrong with the lighting in the stairwell, and she said the fact that Hussein missed her step cannot be blamed on the club’s management.
“In ordinary circumstances, she, like countless others, would have descended the staircase and gone home,” Baucher said. “However, on that evening, whether due to one or more of the factors – painkillers, weight, shoes, drink – she simply missed her footing. I find she did so through no fault on the part of Ronnie Scott’s.”
Metro noted that in the years since the incident, Hussein has lost 5 stone, which is equal to 70 pounds.
While the evidence may not point to Ronnie Scott’s being at fault for Hussein’s fall, Baucher’s harsh criticism in her ruling is jarring, especially coming from a female judge.
Perhaps Hussein was too intoxicated, maybe she was also being careless, but fat-shaming her by using her weight as a factor in the ordeal is just cruel.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Olivia Harris