“A proprietor of an inn, tavern, restaurant, or like business is liable for an assault upon a guest or patron by another guest or third party where the proprietor has reason to anticipate such an assault and fails to exercise reasonable care to forestall or prevent the same.”
(From a Volokh.com posted article) “The duty of a proprietor of a tavern or inn to protect his patrons from injury does not arise until the impending danger becomes apparent to him, or the circumstances are such that a careful and prudent person would be put on notice of the potential danger.”
Other jurisdictions have applied the landowner-invitee analysis to determine whether a university has a duty to protect students from the criminal actions of third parties. In analyzing the issue, [most of the courts] relied upon Restatement (Second) of Torts § 344 (1964), which provides:
“A possessor of land who holds it open to the public for entry for his business purposes is subject to liability to members of the public while they are upon the land for such a purpose, for physical harm caused by the accidental, negligent, or intentionally harmful acts of third persons or animals, and by the failure of the possessor to exercise reasonable care to
“(a) discover that such acts are being done or are likely to be done, or
“(b) give a warning adequate to enable the visitors to avoid the harm, or otherwise to protect them against it.”
The general rule is that a landowner has no duty to protect an invitee on the landowner’s premises from a third party’s criminal attack unless the attack is reasonably foreseeable. Prior similar acts committed upon invitees furnish actual or constructive notice to a landowner. A university owes student tenants the same duty to exercise due care for their protection as a private landowner owes its tenants.