N.Y. Hall Sued In Banister Death

The mother of a man who died trying to “ride the banister” at a Buffalo, N.Y., concert hall sued the venue, claiming a substance on the railings and building design caused his death last year. 

Indu Verma sued Acquest Theater Place LLC, Acquest Development LLC and ESI Inc. individually and on behalf of the estate of Dr. Rajan Verma July 20. She blames them for his post-concert death at the Tralf Music Hall, according to Courthouse News.

Rajan Verma, 28, attended a Lolawolf and Polica concert there in June 2014. He “rode the banister” of the top staircase and then tried to ride a second set of railings. Instead he fell near the top of a balcony because of an alleged sticky substance on the banister, court papers said.

“Defendants improperly used a ‘sticky substance’ such as double-sided tacky tape to increase friction on the banister and deter concertgoers from sliding down it,” the complaint states. “Unfortunately, this ‘sticky substance’ caused decedent Dr. Verma to lose his center of gravity and caused him to drop in between the staircase and the wall.”

The lawsuit also blames the concert venue’s design for the incident, Courthouse News said.

“Given the prior conduct of multiple concertgoers and the fact alcohol is served on the premises, it should have been anticipated that concertgoers would ‘ride the banister’ and that they could possibly fall between the wall and staircase,” the lawsuit says.

“By having sufficient space between the wall and staircase rail to allow a person to fall, defendants Acquest Theater and Acquest Development were also negligent in preventing the fall that ultimately took the life of decedent Dr. Verma.”

Varma’s mother and the estate of her son, a first-year resident in internal medicine, is seeking $2.5 million.

A representative for Tralf Music Hall did not respond to a request for comment at press time.