Considering A Dram Shop Case Against The Twist? 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.
The Twist is a bar located in Stephenville, 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 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, 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 The Twist for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of The Twist Between 2018 and 2019
Stephenville - 2281 Hwy 377 North
On 02/02/2018, an anonymous complaint triggered a TABC investigation into allegations that staff was drinking on the job, sold alcohol to a minor, and sold alcohol to an intoxicated person.
Authorities looked into the matter shortly thereafter. 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 03/03/2018.
A concerned citizen filed a complaint on 07/23/2018, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to an underage customer.
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 09/08/2018.
The TABC received a complaint from an unnamed source on 10/02/2018, claiming that staff was drinking on the job. This type of 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.
Due to a lack of video evidence, authorities could not determine the veracity of the claim. As a result, they could not take any action and on 12/01/2018, they brought their investigation to a close.
A citizen complaint, filed on 02/12/2019, alleged that the bar sold alcohol to a minor, a drunk person, and that staff was drinking on the job.
An investigation ensued, but authorities were not able to uncover any hard evidence of a criminal or administrative violation. Consequently, they could not take any further action, leading to their decision to end their work on the case on 04/02/2019.
The next citizen complaint against the bar came on 04/24/2019, and alleged multiple violations, including: staff drinking on the job, permitting the possession of drugs on the premises, selling alcohol to both a minor and an intoxicated person, and selling alcohol during prohibited hours.
The TABC conducted an inquiry into the claims, but lacking video evidence, agents were not able to determine their validity. Left with no other option, investigators decided to conclude their efforts on 06/12/2019.
On 06/11/2019, a citizen complaint alleged that staff was drinking on the job and sold alcohol to an underage customer.
The investigation that followed lasted over a month, but ultimately failed to uncover any proof of wrongdoing. Unable to take any other action, TABC agents wrapped up the investigation on 07/17/2019.
A citizen complaint, dated 08/12/2019, alleged that the bar sold alcohol to a minor.
Once again, authorities looked into the matter, but due to a lack of video evidence, they could not establish whether a violation occurred. As a result, they closed the case without any further action on 10/03/2019.
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.