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Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Smitty's Cafe & Bakery? Here's What You Need To Know

My firm has sued more bars for liquor law violations than any other in Texas. In my over 30 years of experience, I have repeatedly seen just how serious the consequences can be when bars over-serve alcohol. While the public might see or hear about a drunk driving accident from time to time, it's much less common to hear about the role that irresponsible bars play in those accidents. One of my goals is to raise awareness about the extent of this problem. To this end, I dedicate some of my time to investigating Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission complaint records and reporting what I find here on my website. If you think you might have a dram shop (liquor liability) claim and would like to learn about how to proceed, please call me at (855) 326-0000.

Smitty's Cafe & Bakery is located in Brenham, Texas. In recent years, it has attracted the attention of the TABC due to allegations of liquor law violations. In 2019 alone, authorities conducted two separate investigations into the cafe'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 Smitty's Cafe & Bakery for possible criminal or administrative violations.

TABC Investigations of Smitty's Cafe & Bakery in 2019


Brenham - 100 W Main St

Allegations:

On 05/28/2019, a concerned citizen filed a complaint with the TABC, alleging that the cafe sold alcohol to an intoxicated person and allowed customers to both purchase and consume alcohol during prohibited hours.

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 07/24/2019.

A member of the Brenham community reached out to the TABC on 08/05/2019, claiming that the cafe sold alcohol to a drunk person.

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 09/04/2019.

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.