Assault victim sues Voyeur Nightclub

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Julian Domanico

Julian V. Domanico, an LGBT advocate and former patron of Voyeur Nightclub, is suing the LGBT venue after he was violently assaulted by a bouncer who had a lengthy criminal record.

The lawsuit, filed in August in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, seeks more than $50,000 in damages for Domanico, who lives in Center City and is well-known in the advocacy community. A jury trial has been requested.

On April 12, 2019, Domanico was exiting Voyeur at 1221 St. James St. when security guard Michael J. Mapp punched him twice on his head and torso. Domanico, 30, summoned police and Mapp was promptly arrested. Domanico went to Jefferson Hospital for treatment of his injuries, according to the lawsuit.

“[Domanico] was caused to sustain serious injuries, which include, but are not limited to, severe lacerations to the face and elbow, permanent scarring to the face, and severe psychological trauma,” the lawsuit states.

Mapp, 41, had a lengthy rap sheet prior to working at Voyeur, including illegally possessing a gun. On Jan. 23, Municipal Court Judge Gerard A. Kosinski convicted Mapp of simple assault for his violent behavior toward Domanico. Mapp is currently incarcerated at a state prison in Frackville, Pa. The earliest he can be released is March 2021, according to prison records.

Domanico’s lawsuit also names as a defendant Mainline Private Security LLC, based in Center City. The lawsuit states there’s reason to believe Mainline provided Mapp’s services to Voyeur on a contractual basis. The lawsuit accuses Voyeur and/or Mainline of failing to properly vet Mapp before allowing him to work at Voyeur.

The lawsuit goes on to accuse Voyeur of “[f]ailing to provide adequate medical assistance, or summon medical assistance for [Domanico] — who was in obvious physical distress due to his serious injuries, which included significant bleeding from the face.”

Additionally, the lawsuit notes that Domanico has incurred expenses for medical care and treatment. “(Domanico] has in the past — and may in the future — continue to suffer agonizing aches, pains, mental and emotional anguish, [and] humiliation due to the scarring — as well as emotional and psychological injuries and/or damages,” the lawsuit states.

Moreover, the lawsuit alleges that Voyeur and Mainline acted negligently and/or recklessly. “Defendants negligently and/or recklessly retained Mr. Mapp when they knew or should have known, through reasonable diligence, of Mr. Mapp’s propensity for the type of behavior which resulted in [Domanico’s] injuries,” the lawsuit states.

Guy D’Andrea, an attorney for Domanico, emphasized that his client did nothing to provoke his assailant. “Julian is a productive and contributing member to both the LGBT community and the Philadelphia community at large,” D’Andrea told PGN. “He did absolutely nothing wrong. The only thing he was trying to do was go home. A security guard at this nightclub, unprovoked, outright assaulted him for no reason.”

D’Andrea noted that LGBT patrons expect to feel safe in an LGBT venue. “You have [Mapp] in a place that should be safe for the LGBT community,” D’Andrea continued. “What happened to Julian completely shattered that concept [of safety]. To be assaulted in an LGBTQ property is going to have a long-term traumatic impact on him, as it would for any other person.”

D’Andrea also said public safety was jeopardized by having Mapp work at Voyeur. “When you have someone who has no problem physically attacking a patron for no reason — that’s something that could happen to anyone,” D’Andrea asserted. “This is not how a civilized society is supposed to operate.”

A representative of Voyeur couldn’t be reached for comment. Attorneys for Mainline Private Security didn’t respond to emails or phone calls seeking comment.

D’Andrea said his client hopes for justice in the case. “[The assault] certainly has an impact on him,” D’Andrea concluded. “It’s taken an emotional toll on him. We just look forward to ensuring that justice is done and holding those accountable who were in a position to prevent this from happening.”