DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The daughter of a 32-year-old man who was shot and killed at a Chevron gas station in 2017 is suing the owners over claims that they didn't have proper security.
It all began around 1 a.m. in the 2600 block of Bouldercrest Road on Thanksgiving day. Police arrived to find Andricus Harris with two gunshot wounds to the chest, and his brother kneeling over him administering CPR and desperately trying to save his life.
The victim's brother said they had come to the gas station to put air in their tires. That's when Harris got out of the car and started speaking with the suspect and got into an argument. The victim then went into the store, but police said the suspect followed.
His brother told police he heard gunshots moments later and went into the store to find his brother lying on the floor.
The daughter's attorneys said the convenience store where Harris died had a history crime. Knowing this, attorneys said the defendants, 2691 Bouldercrest Rd, LLC and Strong Enterprices, Inc., didn't provide proper security for its patrons.
"Despite their knowledge of the risk of extreme harm that violent crime posed to its customers and business invitees, the Defendants failed to take any action whatsoever to make the premises safe," the lawsuit states.
Had a security officer been there, they believe the death could have been prevented.
"There was time - from the time the gunman pulled out his gun and pointed it at Mr. Harris before he shot him - if there had been an officer there, that murder could have been prevented," Attorney Daedrea Fenwick said.
Fenwick said that the gas station likely didn't have security because it would have been an extra expense and they didn't want to pay for it.
"They knew that their gas station was located in a dangerous area, they knew that prior crimes had occurred actually at the gas station, that there had been robberies at the gas station - there had been several assaults, actually, at the gas station before this murder occurred," she said.
She said that something as simple as hiring an off-duty police officer could have saved a life that night.
Now, years later, the lawsuit requests a trial by jury and an award of special damages including medical expenses, funeral and burial costs and lost future income in an amount not less than $50,000.
The suit also demands compensatory damages, money equal to the full value of Harris's life, and an amount that would "deter the Defendants from similar conduct in the future."
Attorney Chris Stewart, who also spoke to 11Alive, said that this lawsuit will put other convenience stores on notice of their responsibility to customers.
"This is one of those situations where gas stations are going to learn that they have to protect their customers, plain and simple," he said. "They make money off us every day but they don't provide security."