Heather Isringhausen Gvillo Sep. 30, 2013, 5:01pm

The plaintiff in a lawsuit against a Troy supermarket employee who allegedly videotaped and photographed her in the ladies’ restroom responded to the defendant’s motion to strike and dismiss, requesting the motion be denied.

According to the complaint, Ann Gray claims Schuette SuperValu Market employee Jonathan Spotanski used his cell phone to take photos and video recording of her and another woman through a hole in the ceiling of the ladies’ restroom.

Spotanski allegedly stood on the toilet in the men’s restroom and used a cellular phone to take photos and videos while reaching through the ceiling tile and over the wall separating the two bathrooms of the business, Gray’s response states.

Spotanski responded to the complaint on Aug. 30 denying the allegations, specifically the allegation that the plaintiff was injured to the extent claimed.

Gray filed her response on Sept. 24 claiming a landowner has a duty to protect persons on its property from the criminal activity of third parties when a special relationship exists and the criminal attack was reasonably foreseeable, the response states. Because a special relationship as a business inviter/invitee existed between Gray and Schuette Stores, it should allegedly be held liable.

“It is fair to require the defendant to take proper action to manage and supervise its employees in a manner to assure its employees do not cause harm through criminal actions to defendant’s business invitees.

“Whether a duty [to take measures to guard against criminal events] exists is ultimately a question of fairness,” the response states. “The inquiry involves a weighing of the relationship of the parties, the nature of the risk, and the public interest I the proposed solution.”

The response also states that foreseeability is more than making sure to foresee injuries resulting from negligence.

Schuette Stores, Inc., a co-defendant, is blamed for negligence regarding the condition of the business. According to the response, it should have known that the ceiling tiles in the restrooms were missing, misplaced or could be removed and that the wall separating the two restrooms did not extend to the ceiling, thus not entirely separating the rooms.

Schuette Stores filed a motion to dismiss on Aug. 12 stating that while Gray claims it should have known what Spotanski was up to, she failed to allege how or why Schuette Stores knew or should have known about the photographs or videotape.

Schuette Stores demands a trial by jury.

Madison County Chief Judge David Hylla presides over the case.

Gray seeks a judgment of more than $50,000.

Gray is represented by Adam E. Berry of Beatty & Motil of Glen Carbon.

Theodore J. MacDonald, Jr. and Benjamin W. Powell of Edwardsville represent Schuette Stores, Inc.

James E. Gorman of Edwardsville represents Jonathan Spotanski.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 13-L-683

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