Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Fast Eddie's? Here's The Background Information You Need
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 the general public might see or hear of drunk driving accidents from time to time, it doesn'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.
Fast Eddie's is a chain of sports taverns, with twelve locations that span across Texas and Louisiana. Locals know it for its selection of bar games, as well as for offering a wide variety of Texas beers and spirits. However, what is not widely known is that TABC performed nine investigations into Fast Eddie's for alleged violations of state liquor laws between 2015 and 2019 .
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 Fast Eddie's for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of Fast Eddie's Locations Between 2015 and 2019
Edinburg - 815 N Closner Boulevard
On 03/27/2015, a citizen complaint filed with TABC alleged that a staff member at this location was drinking on the job. This kind of allegation is more serious than it might appear on the surface. When you consider that the staff has a legal obligation to stop serving alcohol to intoxicated patrons, you can see why being sober is important during working hours. If the staff itself is intoxicated, it's likely that it will be unable to perform this function well.
Authorities looked into the matter, but in these cases, it's next to impossible to prove a violation occurred without video footage of the incident. Unable to locate any evidence capable of making the charge stick, TABC closed the case on 05/02/2015.
The next complaint against this location came from an unnamed source on 06/20/2018, and alleged that the bar sold alcohol to a drunk customer.
The ensuing investigation lasted over a month, but failed to find any proof of wrongdoing. As a result, authorities decided to end the inquiry on 07/29/2018.
A member of the Edinburg community filed a third complaint on 09/26/2018, claiming that staff sold alcohol during prohibited hours.
As in the above cases, authorities had no video evidence to corroborate the allegation. Unable to take any further action, TABC shut this case on 12/15/2018.
Austin - 13945 Hwy 183N 'D122'
The only complaint against this location came from law enforcement on 01/07/2016. The report alleged that staff sold alcohol to a patron who was already over the limit. TABC followed up with an investigation shortly thereafter.
In spite of the fact that a police officer was the source of the complaint, authorities could not locate any evidence of a criminal or administrative violation. Consequently, after a lengthy six-month investigation, the case concluded on 07/02/2016.
San Antonio - 502 Embassy Oaks Suite 133
On 10/17/2017, a concerned citizen reported this location to TABC for three alleged violations: possession of drugs on the premises, permitting the possession of drugs, and a staff member drinking on the job.
This time, authorities managed to find sufficient evidence to take action, issuing warning citations for three criminal violations as well as for one administrative violation. Soon after, on 10/28/2017, authorities closed the case.
Round Rock - 502 Embassy Oaks Suite 133
On 01/15/2016, a member of the Round Rock community filed a complaint with TABC, alleging that a staff member at this location was intoxicated on the job.
Once again, authorities investigated for nearly two months but came up empty handed. With no other course of action available, TABC decided to shut this case on 03/05/2016.
A law enforcement complaint, placed on 03/14/2017, alleged that the bar sold alcohol to an intoxicated patron.
Due to a lack of video evidence, TABC's subsequent inquiry was unable to substantiate the claim. Unable to take further action, authorities concluded their efforts on 04/11/2017.
The third complaint against this location came from a concerned citizen on 05/03/2017. It charged the bar with two violations: permitting the possession of drugs on the premises and selling alcohol to a drunk patron.
TABC took a look into the allegations, but as is all too common, it could not find any proof capable of standing up in court. As a result, the investigation came to an end on 06/28/2017, with authorities taking no further action.
On 12/06/2017, a law enforcement complaint alleged that this location sold alcohol to an intoxicated patron.
As video evidence of the claim was not available, the investigation could not establish its veracity. Due to insufficient proof of a criminal or administrative violation, authorities closed this case on 02/02/2018.
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.