Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Garcia's Bar & Grill? Here's What You Need To Know
I've been suing irresponsible bars for over-serving alcohol for 30 years. My experience handling hundreds of cases has repeatedly shown me just how many bars fail to follow alcohol service regulations, as well as the tragedies that all too often result. While people might see or hear about a drunk driving accident from time to time, they don't tend to hear about the role that reckless bars play in those accidents. In order to call more attention to this issue, I dedicate a portion of my time to reviewing the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's complaint records and reporting my findings here on my website. If you think you may have a dram shop (liquor liability) claim and have questions about how to proceed, don't hesitate to call me at (855) 326-0000.
Garcia's Bar & Grill is located in Pearsall, Texas. In recent years, it has attracted a substantial amount of attention from the TABC due to allegations of liquor law violations. Between 2018 and 2019 alone, authorities conducted five separate investigations into the bar's alcohol service practices.
In my experience, it is uncommon for a bar without a history of run-ins with the TABC to end up on the hook for contributing to a wrongful death or injury. Virtually every bar I have ever sued was already on the authorities' radar. That's why I pay close attention to bars with several recent complaints against them. The more investigations a bar has had, the greater my concern is that it could one day cause 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 Garcia's Bar & Grill for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of Garcia's Bar & Grill Between 2018 and 2019
Pearsall - 205 S Oak Street
On 05/28/2018, a staff member filed a complaint with the TABC, alleging that a breach of the peace (typically a fight) occurred and that the bar failed to report it (a separate violation in itself). While it might seem strange that a staff member would be the source of a TABC complaint, employees have a legal obligation to report any violations they see in the workplace.
Upon investigation, authorities were able to confirm the allegations, which they classified as administrative violations. After deciding not to hand down any punishment, the TABC closed the case without further action on 07/14/2018.
Law enforcement contacted the TABC on 09/12/2018, alleging that another unreported breach of the peace took place.
As in the previous investigation, TABC agents found sufficient evidence to support the claims, but both violations were ultimately dismissed by a supervising officer. On 10/05/2018, authorities brought their work to a close.
A second law enforcement complaint, filed on 01/18/2019, alleged that the bar sold alcohol to an intoxicated customer.
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 03/20/2019.
Another law enforcement complaint, dated 04/17/2019, claimed that a breach of the peace occurred.
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 06/12/2019.
On 05/21/2019, a complaint from law enforcement claimed that yet another unreported breach of the peace took place.
Due to a lack of video evidence, investigators could not determine the veracity of the claim. As a result, they could not take any further action, leading to their decision to close the case on 09/07/2019.
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.