Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Headliners Sports Bar? 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.
Headliners Sports Bar is located in Nacogdoches, 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 no fewer than seven 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 of a violation, 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 Headliners Sports Bar for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of Headliners Sports Bar Between 2018 and 2019
Nacogdoches - 3801 N St Suite 10 And 11
Law enforcement contacted the TABC on 03/16/2018, accusing the bar of selling alcohol to an intoxicated person.
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 04/14/2018.
A concerned citizen filed a complaint with the TABC, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to a minor and allowed staff to sell drugs on the premises.
While the ensuing investigation did not find any evidence to support either allegation, it did find proof that the bar sold alcohol to an intoxicated person, which authorities classified as an administrative violation. After handing down an unspecified penalty, the TABC closed the case on 05/11/2018.
A member of the Nacogdoches community reached out to the TABC on 10/19/2018, claiming that the bar sold alcohol to both a minor and an intoxicated person.
As mentioned in the first 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 11/27/2018.
Law enforcement got in touch with the TABC on 12/01/2018, accusing staff of drinking on the job and selling alcohol to an intoxicated person. The first allegation is more serious than it might appear on the surface. Staff has a legal obligation to stop serving alcohol to patrons who exhibit signs of being dangerously intoxicated. If staff is drinking, its ability to judge when to cut off service is impaired.
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 01/22/2019.
The TABC received a citizen complaint on 09/22/2019, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to both a minor and an intoxicated person.
The subsequent investigation lasted over a month and a half, but authorities were ultimately unsuccessful at proving either of the allegations. Unable to take any further action, the TABC concluded its work on 11/10/2019.
An anonymous complaint, filed on 11/21/2019, brought the TABC back to investigate allegations that the bar sold alcohol to both a minor and a drunk customer.
As is so often the case, TABC agents could not find any evidence to corroborate the claims. Consequently, investigators decided to conclude their efforts on 12/10/2019.
Law enforcement filed a complaint with the TABC on 12/10/2019, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to both a minor and an intoxicated person.
After nearly two months of investigation, authorities still had not managed to uncover any proof of a criminal or administrative violation. With no other option available, the TABC decided to close the case on 02/07/2020.
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.