Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Twenty Grand Saloon? Here's What You Need To Know
For three decades, I've been holding bars accountable for over-serving alcohol. In the hundreds of cases I've handled, I've seen just how widespread irresponsible alcohol service is, as well as the tragedies that often follow in its wake. While people might see or hear about drunk driving accidents from time to time, rarely do they hear about the role that reckless bars play in those accidents. In order to draw more attention to this issue, I dedicate a portion of my time to investigating the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's complaint records and reporting my findings here on my website. If you believe you may have a dram shop claim, please call my office at (855) 326-0000.
Twenty Grand Saloon is a cocktail bar located in San Antonio, Texas. In recent years, it has attracted the TABC's attention on multiple occasions due to allegations of liquor law violations. Between 2016 and 2019, authorities conducted no fewer than five investigations into the bar's alcohol service practices.
In my experience, it's 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 contribute to 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 Twenty Grand Saloon for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of Twenty Grand Saloon Between 2016 and 2019
San Antonio - 5943 Bandera Road
On 04/27/2016, a concerned citizen filed a complaint with the TABC, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to an intoxicated patron and allowed staff to sell drugs on the premises.
Authorities followed up with an investigation 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. In this particular instance, authorities had neither, resulting in their decision to close the case on 05/21/2016.
A member of the San Antonio community reached out to the TABC on 07/05/2016, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to a minor.
TABC agents looked into the matter, but due to a lack of video evidence, they could not prove that any wrongdoing took place. Unable to take any further action, authorities concluded their efforts on the case on 07/16/2016.
The next citizen complaint came on 08/13/2016, alleging that staff was drinking on the job and allowed gambling on the premises. 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 exhibits signs of being dangerously intoxicated. If staff itself is drinking, its ability to judge when to cut off service is impaired.
As in the previous two investigations, authorities were unable to turn up any hard evidence of a criminal or administrative violation. With no other course of action available, investigators wrapped up their work on the case on 08/19/2016.
Law enforcement contacted the TABC on 02/27/2019, claiming that staff was drinking on the job and sold alcohol to an obviously drunk customer.
The ensuing investigation lasted nearly a month, but was not successful at locating any proof of wrongdoing. Even when the source of a complaint is a police officer, the TABC still requires corroborating evidence before it can take any action. Given the circumstances, authorities decided to close the case on 03/26/2019.
Later that year, on 10/24/2019, the TABC received a citizen complaint that alleged a breach of the peace (typically a fight) which the bar supposedly failed to report, selling alcohol to a drunk patron, and other miscellaneous violations.
After conducting an investigation, authorities were not able to find any evidence to corroborate any of the initial claims. However, they did find evidence of one count of public intoxication, for which they issued the bar a warning citation. On 12/19/2019, the TABC closed the case without further action.
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.