Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Chicas Bonitas Austin? Here's What You Need To Know
I've sued more reckless bars for failing to adhere to liquor laws than anyone else in the state of Texas. With three decades of experience and hundreds of cases behind me, I have seen just how frequently bars put profit before safety and over-serve alcohol, in spite of their legal obligation to serve responsibly. While people might see or hear of drunk driving accidents from time to time, they don't tend to hear as much about the role that irresponsible bars play in those accidents. In order to raise more awareness of this topic, I spend a portion of my time researching the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's complaint database and writing about my findings here on my website. If you think you might have a dram shop (liquor liability) claim, don't hesitate to call my office at (855) 326-0000.
Chicas Bonitas Austin is an adult entertainment club located in Austin, Texas. In recent years, it has attracted the attention of the TABC due to allegations of liquor law violations. Between 2018 and 2019 alone, authorities conducted four separate investigations into the club's alcohol service practices.
In my three decades of legal practice, rarely have I seen bar end up involved in a wrongful death or injury case that didn't have a history of complaints on file with TABC. Almost every bar I've ever sued was already on the authorities radar, so when I see a bar that has been investigated several times over a short period, it raises my concern that it could one day play a part in an accident.
Note: Investigations are not proof of wrongdoing. However, if authorities investigate and fail to find evidence, it doesn't necessarily mean an establishment is innocent, either. The purpose of this article is simply to relay publicly-available information about incidents where the TABC has investigated Chicas Bonitas Austin for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of Chicas Bonitas Austin Between 2018 and 2019
Austin - 3701 Ih 35 North
Law enforcement contacted the TABC on 03/22/2018, claiming that the club sold alcohol to an intoxicated person and allowed alcohol to be removed from the premises.
Authorities looked into the matter shortly thereafter. Even when the source of a complaint is a police officer, for most liquor law violations, the TABC requires either video footage of the incident or eyewitness testimony from one of its agents in order to take action. Having neither in this investigation, authorities decided to close the case on 05/01/2018.
A second law enforcement complaint, filed on 09/19/2018, alleged that the club sold alcohol to a drunk customer and allowed a minor to possess or consume alcohol.
As mentioned in the previous investigation summary, the TABC relies heavily on video footage to back up most claims of wrongdoing. Since authorities had no such evidence in this investigation, they could not take any action, leading to their decision to close the case on 11/15/2018.
The TABC received a complaint from a staff member on 01/04/2019, claiming that a breach of the peace (typically a fight) occurred.
TABC agents conducted an inquiry, but due to a lack of video evidence, they could not determine the veracity of the claim. As a result, investigators could not take any further action, leading to their decision to close the case on 04/02/2019.
Yet another law enforcement complaint, placed on 03/22/2019, accused the bar of selling alcohol to a minor, in addition to alleging that a breach of the peace occurred.
An investigation ensued, but after nearly two months of work, authorities were ultimately unable to locate any evidence of a criminal or administrative violation. Consequently, the TABC decided to close the case on 05/17/2019.
Texas Law Says Accident Victims Can Sue Bad Bars
If you would like to learn more about Texas dram shop law (i.e. lawsuits against bars who play a role in injurious or fatal accidents), please visit our Texas Dram Shop Law Info Page.