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Atlanta Braves Fan Dies After 65-Foot Fall at Turner Field

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By Brett Snider, Esq. on August 13, 2013 1:30 PM

An Atlanta Braves fan died after falling six stories from the upper seating deck of Turner Field on Monday.

Ronald Lee Homer, 29, of Conyers, Georgia, was attending the baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies and appeared to have sustained his fatal injuries from an accidental fall, reports Atlanta's WSB-TV.

This is the second fatal accident to occur at Turner Field in the last five years, and the historic baseball venue may be facing legal trouble.

Falls From the Upper Deck

In addition to Homer's accidental death on Monday, 25-year-old Justin Hayes fell to his death from Turner Field's upper deck in 2008, reports ABC News.

It is often difficult in these cases to prove how an "accidental" fall was caused. If Homer's family chooses to sue Turner Field for wrongful death, they may face scrutiny over their son's actions.

Toxicology reports are still being processed to determine if drugs or alcohol were in Homer's system before his death, as police had determined that Hayes' fall was due in part to alcohol, reports ABC News.

Slippery conditions may also have been a possible factor, as Homer's fall occurred during a rain delay.

Potential Premises Liability

There are actually a surprising number of ways to injure yourself at sports arenas, and Homer's fall was one of many tragic deaths that occur at stadiums across the country.

Venues like Turner Field are typically liable for injuries that occur due to hazards on their property under the theory of premises liability. As an "invitee" of the venue, a ticket-holding Braves fan like Homer is owed a certain degree of care by Turner Field.

Although it is unclear if Homer's family has yet chosen to sue, sports stadiums can be held liable for any manner of injuries on their property, from falling on ice to even an exposed electrical outlet.

If they do choose to sue, Homer's family may try to prove that Turner Field could have known about the hazardous conditions of the upper deck due to Hayes' death in 2008, and possibly had a duty to warn patrons about risk of falling or to install a safety rail or netting.

Regardless of Turner Field's liability, Homer's death makes this the "third time a sports fan has fallen from the stands in Atlanta" in the past year, reports WSB-TV.

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