Considering A Dram Shop Case Against The District Bar? Here's What You Need To Know
I have sued more bars for irresponsible alcohol service in the last thirty years than anyone else in Texas. Having handled hundreds of cases, I can attest to just how widespread the practice of over-serving customers is. 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 the interest of helping the general public see the real extent of this problem, I spend a portion of my time researching the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's record of complaints and posting about my findings here on my website. If you think you might have a dram shop (liquor liability) case, don't hesitate to call me at (855) 326-0000.
The District Bar is one of the most popular bars in downtown Mcallen, Texas. Though it has a solid reputation with locals, it has had its share of run-ins with the TABC in recent years for allegations of liquor law violations. Since 2018, it has had no fewer than five separate investigations into its 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 contribute to an accident.
Note: Investigations are not evidence that a bar has broken the law. Investigators must have sufficient proof that there was a violation of TABC regulations in order to take legal action. Owing to the nature of liquor law violations, that proof can often be difficult for authorities to obtain. The purpose of this article is simply to relay publicly-available information about incidents where the TABC has investigated The District Bar for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of The District Bar Between 2017 and 2019
Temple - 300 Hk Dodgen Loop Southwest
On 08/17/2018, law enforcement placed a complaint with TABC, alleging that the bar allowed a minor to consume or possess alcohol.
Agents looked into the matter and found evidence to corroborate the claim, issuing a warning citation for a criminal violation, as well as an unspecified penalty for an administrative violation. On 08/17/2018, TABC concluded its work on the case.
The next complaint came on 11/02/2018, with a concerned citizen claiming that the bar both sold and permitted consumption of alcohol during prohibited hours.
The ensuing investigation was successful at locating proof of an administrative violation, for which authorities handed down an unspecified penalty. On 11/19/2018, TABC closed this case.
On 11/27/2018, another law enforcement complaint alleged that a breach of the peace (typically a fight) occurred.
It did not take investigators long to find evidence of an administrative violation, for which it handed down an unspecified civil penalty. Shortly thereafter, on 12/02/2018, TABC agents finished their work and shut the case.
The next complaint came from a member of the Mcallen community on 01/14/2019, alleging that the bar both served alcohol to a minor and failed to report a breach of the peace.
The investigation that followed was unable to produce any proof of a violation. As a result, authorities decided to shut the case on 02/26/2019 without taking further action.
On 06/21/2019, a citizen complaint alleged that the bar allowed a minor to possess or consume alcohol.
TABC investigated the matter, but after over two months of inquiry, it failed to find any evidence of wrongdoing. Thus, on 09/03/2019, it concluded its work on the case.
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.