A disabled New York City screenwriter is suing the management of his luxury apartment after a construction worker who works in the building violently assaults him in an elevator.
Richard Regen, 60, filed the lawsuit with his wife, Lily Apper, on Tuesday against ABC Management Group and construction firm M Daddio Inc. and The Artists’ Condominium and construction worker Andrew Caban about the February 2 attack, which left Regine in the hospital. for eight days and required major head surgery.
Regine was leaving his apartment on West 23rd Street on his way to physical therapy after suffering a debilitating stroke two years earlier, when Cabane assaulted him in the elevator, leaving him unconscious before fleeing.
Regin’s attorneys said he suffered a cerebral hemorrhage, traumatic brain injury, and seizures in the aftermath of the accident. He was later forced to undergo neurosurgery for cranial damage, and photos from his recovery show a row of pins coming down his scarred head.
Regens is seeking damages that have yet to be determined. Lawyers said the defendants showed negligence that led to Mr. Regen’s injuries and continued recovery. The Manhattan Department is pursuing criminal prosecution of Cabane, the attorney said.
Construction worker Andrew Cabane assaults Richard Regin in an elevator in February
Regine was forced to undergo major surgery to repair his damaged skull (right) after the attack
On the day of the attack, Regen was on the way to a date where he was to rehearse a speech he was giving to mark his graduation from the rehab program he’d been in since his stroke, according to the New York Post.
Kaban held the elevator during construction work, said Attorney Nathan Wiersman, then rode the elevator to the Regine floor after the elevator was called repeatedly.
Werksman said Regin — whose speech was affected by a stroke, according to the lawsuit — told Cabanne he wasn’t allowed to take the elevator, prompting the construction worker to become angry and say “Do you want to be hit?”
Security footage from inside the elevator showed Regine backing into a corner while they were talking, before Kaban approached him, shoved him against a wall, and then punched him twice in the head.
Regine fell to the ground, where he was apparently unconscious for several moments. Kaban stood over Regin as he waited for the elevator to come into the lobby, seemingly saying something to the limp body before leaning over to press a button on the elevator panel.
“After brutally attacking Regine… Cabane stood over Regine’s body while the elevator descended to the first floor, but did not provide assistance to Regine – who was seriously injured -,” the suit reads. It alleges that Kaban “ran away from the building”.
“The defendants have violated the most sacred rights,” the lawyers wrote. “Safety within one’s home.”
“New Yorkers should not fear being attacked in their elevators by anyone, let alone people specially hired to work in their buildings,” Werksman told the paper.
Kaban knocks Regine into the building’s elevator, leaving him unconscious on the floor
Richard Regen with his wife, interior designer Lily Abeer. The pair are suing over the attack
Richard Regen’s luxury apartment in Midtown Manhattan, where he was attacked
Part of the altercation was heard by Regine’s wife through the closed elevator doors.
“I never – in a million years – thought that something like this could happen to my husband in our building,” she told The Post.
Regine was taken to the intensive care unit at Bellevue Hospital, where he stayed for eight days.
Werksman said Regen’s injuries have forced him to return to physical therapy, and that he needs around-the-clock supervision.
Cabane is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday in a misdemeanor assault and harassment case, according to public records. He has pleaded not guilty, his lawyers told The Post, and point out that the video does not include audio of what the couple said to each other in the elevator.
Public records show that the Regens purchased their apartment near the High-Line in New York City in 2022 for $4 million.
“Above all else, we hope in this lawsuit to protect others so that this does not happen to them,” Ms. Regin said.