A Key West jury has awarded a Massachusetts woman $18,000 for injuries she suffered after tripping over a dog at Turtle Kraals Restaurant Bar four years ago.
Alayne Bonnie Dunbar of Marlboro claims she tripped over a customer's dog that was lying near the women's restroom on June 15, 2006, suffering disfigurement and a loss of wage-earning capability, the suit says.
The jury on Thursday found that Dunbar and the restaurant were equally liable in a 50/50 negligence claim, according to court records. She incurred $11,770 in medical costs and $24,230 for pain and suffering, totaling $36,000, the jury found.
Gene Smith, who owns the Southernmost Restaurant Group named in the suit, which includes Turtle Kraals, said he wasn't surprised by the verdict.
"I thought it was fair all the way around," Smith said. "Obviously, 50/50 was fair."
Although state law prohibits dogs in restaurants, Smith said he used to allow them in Turtle Kraals -- but no longer. "We changed it three days ago," Smith said of his policy, adding it applies to all of the businesses that fall under the Southernmost Restaurant Group umbrella. "It's just not worth it."
The group includes the Half Shell Raw Bar, Alonzo's Oyster Bar, A B Lobster House Restaurant, A B Marina and the White Tarpon.
Dunbar and her attorney, Mary Schneider of Coral Gables, could not be reached for comment.