Hotel Security Altercation Victim: 'I Thought I Was Dead'

Vacationers claim they were wrongfully attacked by security guards at a New Jersey casino.
8:47 | 08/08/14

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Transcript for Hotel Security Altercation Victim: 'I Thought I Was Dead'
Millions of American families trying to get the most out of the final weeks of summer, so many headed to the shores. But if you're about to check into a hotel, this video is sure to shock you from Atlantic City. A brawl between security guards and guests. Brian Ross with the tapes and the tough questions. What will you decide? Reporter: In its jazzy marketing campaign, Atlantic City and its casinos promote the New Jersey oceanfront resort as a place where everyone is welcome. Gamblers, hipsters and families. That's not what the Binns family of Cape Coral, Florida, found. It was miserable. It was absolutely miserable. Reporter: University of Pennsylvania student and classical guitarist, Sean oaks, fared no better. Not what you expected when you came to Atlantic City? Not what I expected. Reporter: And it was even worse for former college basketball player rob coney, now a junior accountant in Philadelphia. I'm laying in a pool of my own blood. I thought I was dying. I thought I was dead. Reporter: All of this took place in one casino in Atlantic City, Harrah's, part of the giant Caesar's entertainment corporation, one of the biggest gambling companies in the world. It was all security using unnecessary, unprovoked violence to handle situations. Reporter: The incidents have now led to a series of lawsuits against Harrah's and its parent company, with casino surveillance videos provided to "20/20" by lawyer Paul d'amato, who calls them the best evidence of negligence, assault and battery against his clients. No sane person can explain the conduct that we see in those videos. Reporter: Even if you're raising your voice at the front desk? Yes. Reporter: Or having an argument with a security officer? This is the United States of America. The last time I saw and heard, we don't beat people up for raising their voices or getting upset. Reporter: In the case of the Binns family, now suing Harrah's, voices were raised and security moved in after John Binns, a professional poker player, says he was being evicted because the hotel computer mistakenly did not list him as a guest even though they had been staying there for two days. Then, suddenly, what few would consider good hospitality. They grabbed him and just slammed him to the floor. And all I could say was, "Get off of him, he's got a pacemaker." Reporter: Renee Binns, a lawyer and her daughter Andrea say they too got loud, afraid for his life. They were very rough, like, slammed him to the floor. Reporter: And then, as mother and daughter walked away from the scene toward the elevators to their room, security swooped in to stop them. I just kept yelling that she's a minor, don't touch her, as loud as I could. Reporter: Watch as the daughter is wrestled to the ground and handcuffed. I didn't know where my mom was. And then I remember being brought to the floor and getting my face smashed into the marble floor. Reporter: And then mom brought down, dragged off by a man her lawyer says is the casino's head of security. It ended up with a broken nose for Andrea, whiplash and early termination of what was supposed to be a very nice family trip. Reporter: For 26-year-old college student Sean oaks, a trip with a friend to Atlantic City was supposed to be a chance to meet girls. As part of its effort to attract more than the usual gambling crowd, Harrah's hosts a hugely popular indoor pool party, throbbing music, a packed dance floor with the liquor flowing. Oaks says his problem began before he even got inside as a security guard closely inspected his driver's license, as seen on the hotel surveillance tape. And he starts to bend my id in half and I was like, "Oh my god, don't do that." Reporter: As oaks tries to grab his driver's license back, the trouble begins. A whole gang of people jumped on me and piled on and kicked me and hit me in the back of the head. They were waling on me. And I heard a voice from behind me say, "Break his arms if you have to." Reporter: In the movies, in "Ocean's 11" and another called "21," casino security people are portrayed as very tough, at least in dealing with card cheats. In the real-life version, oaks, who was not a card cheat, ended up, he says in his lawsuit, punched, kicked and stomped on. In a complaint filed with police, a Harrah's security officer claimed that oaks was the aggressor. But the complaint was dropped this week. Are you an aggressive, violent person? No, absolutely not. Reporter: Get in many fights? Never. Reporter: Until this night in Atlantic City? I wouldn't even call it a fight, though, because I wasn't fighting anyone. I was just being beaten. Reporter: But the worst of the incidents at the popular casino involved rob coney, whose 6'7" height made him a standout basketball player in school. But security guards said his size made them fearful, according to a report later filed by an off-duty police officer working for the casino. Coney, in the plaid shirt, says the incident began when a guard wrongly said he had left the pool party and could not return. His friend, in the vest, is trying to calm things down by backing him off. Coney admits he had been drinking at the time, like most of those at the party, and became upset and used rough language. Coney says Harrah's security, including the off-duty Atlantic City police officer in uniform, kept at it even as they were in the lobby, and his friends continue to back him away. Here, the video shows the officer with his baton in his right hand, about to move in. And the next thing I know, this officer strikes me in the throat and then he brings out his baton and then he chases me and beats me. And I'm on the ground and they're on top of me, hitting me. Reporter: Coney is later hauled off, bleeding from his head. The off-duty officer would later claim coney pushed him twice and charged him in a fighting manner. While coney later pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor disorderly person count. No charges were brought against the off-duty police officer who beat him with the baton and coney has now filed a civil lawsuit. That's an assault. Reporter: We showed the tapes of all three incidents to security expert and retired New York City police detective nick Casale, who says no language and nothing he saw on the tape justifies the baton beating. They may be irate. They may be loud. They may be obnoxious. The worst thing you can imagine does not justify you to hit someone with a nightstick. Not just hit them. He whaled at them. Reporter: All of this could not come at a worse time for Atlantic City, where several of its casinos are closed or planning to close as fewer gamblers have been showing up there. The new Atlantic City mayor don guardian has been pushing for the city to do more to make the resort a welcome, family friendly place. The mayor said he had not seen the videos from Harrah's until we showed him some of them. So this is a surprise to you? This is a surprise. Reporter: He did not like what he saw. Beating can't be tolerated. It's not acceptable. Violence can't be tolerated. Reporter: And as to that off-duty Atlantic City police officer with the baton, the mayor said as of the beginning of this year, police officers are no longer allowed to work for the casinos as bouncers. Isn't this a matter for internal affairs at the very least? Absolutely. I am going to raise it now because you've just brought it to my attention. Reporter: Harrah's would not provide anyone to appear in our report, and when we went to find the director of security, Doug Ruhl, who the lawyer bringing the lawsuit says was present in each incident, Ruhl told us he could not answer our questions. Is this you right here, sir? Sir, like I said, unfortunately we're not allowed to comment on any of this. Reporter: Do you think this is appropriate? Sir, we're not allowed to comment on any of this. Reporter: Do you think it was appropriate? Did you go over the line? Later in a written statement, the casino said its security personnel are trained to use the least amount of force required while taking necessary steps to protect guests, employees and themselves. But there was no comment on any of the cases involving the dramatic videos. This is a city that needs to be hospitable. That type of activity can't occur. When that occurs, we're in the wrong business. Coming up, sand, surf, and

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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