The family of a Texas woman who was killed after she was hit by a drunk off-duty police officer is suing the bar that served the officer the alcohol.
Jeff Rasansky, the attorney representing Sonia Baker's family, said the family decided to sue the Pour House for over-serving patrons and "placing profits ahead of safety." The lawsuit was filed under the state's Dram Shop Act, which states that those establishments that sell alcohol to an obviously intoxicated person can be held liable if that patron causes an accident.
Named as defendants in the lawsuit are the Pour House (part of Aventura Hospitality LLC), the bar's owner Eric Tschetter, and Pueri, Inc., another business entity. Baker's family is claiming the bar continued to serve the officer, Jesus Cisneros of the Fort Worth Police Department, to the point of him becoming "dangerously inebriated," and then allowed him to leave the bar and drive away. The lawsuit further alleges that because the bar over-served Cisneros and allowed him to leave while clearly intoxicated; he was able to take his city-owned vehicle and sped down the street, crashing into Baker's PT Cruiser.
It wasn't mentioned whether or not the family plans to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit against Cisneros, although they probably will. Since the accident, Cisneros has been charged with vehicular manslaughter, but is currently out on bail.
An internal investigation by the police department found that Cisneros and several other narcotics officers visited three bars as part of an unauthorized undercover bar detail. Afterwards, Cisneros drove to the Pour House to meet other officers for a birthday celebration, were he consumed another four beers and took four shots of alcohol.
After the accident, he was taken to the hospital where a blood test determined his BAC was .17, more than twice the legal limit.
He has since resigned from the department. The police department also launched an investigation to determine why the other officers allowed Cisneros to drive when he was clearly inebriated.
Experienced North Carolina Auto Accident Attorneys
If you have recently lost a loved one in a drunk driving accident, an experienced North Carolina personal injury attorney at Lanier Law Group, P.A. can help you file a wrongful death lawsuit against the person responsible for causing the accident. Drunk driving is one of the most egregious forms of negligence, and anyone who is responsible for killing or injuring an innocent person because they were drinking and driving must be held accountable for their actions.
To learn more about your legal rights and options following an alcohol-involved collision, please call (855) 757-4204 to speak with an attorney at Lanier Law Group, P.A. today!