Airbnb takes legal action against Cincinnati party guest after shooting

Airbnb takes legal action against Cincinnati party guest after shooting
Airbnb announced Monday the company is taking legal action against the host of a Cincinnati party after a man was shot and seriously hurt on Broadway Street Sunday, Aug. 16. (Source: FOX19 NOW)

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Airbnb said Monday the company is taking legal action against the booking guest who threw an unauthorized party in a Pendleton Airbnb against the company’s COVID-19 policy where a man who works with the host was shot.

The guest booked the listing under false pretenses, and that person has been removed from the platform, the company said in a news release.

“Airbnb is working to provide support to the host after this tragic incident. In addition, Airbnb is committing that it will donate any money recovered through this proceeding to a local Cincinnati non-profit fighting against gun violence,” the release states.

The male victim was found shot in the back in the 1300 block of Broadway Street about 10:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16 and taken to University of Cincinnati Medical Center, Cincinnati police have said.

The shooting was reported after a fight broke out at a party inside a local Airbnb apartment.

The man is expected to recover, according to police.

No arrests have been made.

Our media partner at the Cincinnati Enquirer reports the shooting victim is 31-year-old handyman Stephen Knight, who was trying to break up the party. Eric Haberthier, who leads the Greater Cincinnati Owners Airbnb Association, told the Enquirer Knight went to check on the rental due to noise complaints and was attacked by the guests there.

Airbnb said Monday this is the second time they taken steps to initiate legal proceedings against a booking guest for throwing an unauthorized party, following a similar action last week in Sacramento, California.

It also comes after Airbnb’s announcement of a global ban on all parties and events at Airbnb listings.

As part of that announcement, the company noted “We acknowledge that there will always be those who attempt to break the rules. This is why we’ve implemented steep consequences for hosts or guests who try to skirt them – including bans from our community and even legal action.”

Airbnb said it has no tolerance for unauthorized parties, which are expressly banned in its community standards.

The company also recently restricted some U.S. guests under the age of 25 from booking entire home listings in their local area. Additionally, the company has expanded its risk detection efforts aimed at stopping unauthorized parties. 

Airbnb also bans “party houses” and has instituted a 24/7 neighborhood support hotline for neighbors to directly communicate concerns and help them enforce that policy.

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