Considering A Dram Shop Case Against Wurzbach Ice House? 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.
Wurzbach Ice House is a bar located in San Antonio, Texas. In recent years, it has attracted a significant amount of attention from the TABC due to allegations of liquor law violations. Between 2016 and 2019, authorities conducted no fewer than six 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 Wurzbach Ice House for possible criminal or administrative violations.
TABC Investigations of Wurzbach Ice House Between 2016 and 2019
San Antonio - 10141 Wurzbach Road
On 02/01/2016, a concerned citizen filed a complaint with the TABC, alleging that the bar sold alcohol to both a minor and an intoxicated patron.
Authorities looked into the matter soon after. 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 investigation, authorities had neither, leading to their decision to close the case on 02/09/2016.
A member of the San Antonio community filed a complaint on 03/29/2017, alleging that the bar permitted a minor to possess or consume alcohol.
As mentioned in the previous investigation summary, the TABC relies heavily on video footage to back up most claims of wrongdoing. Since it had no such evidence in this investigation, the TABC closed the case on 04/25/2017.
The TABC received a citizen complaint on 12/21/2018 that alleged the bar sold alcohol to a customer who was already over the limit.
Due to a lack of video evidence, investigators could not determine the veracity of the claim. Unable to take any further action, they ended their work on 01/23/2019.
Law enforcement contacted the TABC on 04/05/2019, claiming that a breach of the peace (typically a fight) took place, and that the bar failed to report it (a separate violation in itself).
Even when the source of a complaint is a police officer, the TABC still requires corroborating evidence before it can take action. After four months of investigation, authorities still had not managed to produce any evidence to back up the claims. Consequently, they wrapped up their efforts on the case on 08/06/2019.
The next citizen complaint came on 10/08/2019, alleging that staff was drinking on the job and sold alcohol to both a drunk person and a minor.
The investigation that followed was not successful at locating any hard evidence of a criminal or administrative violation. With no other course of action available, the TABC shut the case on 11/27/2019.
A second law enforcement complaint reached the TABC on 12/17/2019, accusing the bar of selling alcohol to a drunk customer.
An investigation ensued, but authorities had no luck uncovering corroborating evidence. After nearly two months on the case, they decided to conclude their work on 02/15/2020.
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.