by: Nathaniel Puente
HIDALGO COUNTY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — A franchise company that runs Applebee’s restaurants is facing a lawsuit from a man who says a bartender served him alcohol over the limits established by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC).
According to court documents, a Hidalgo County man was at an Applebee’s location in Edinburg on Jan. 17, 2020, when he became intoxicated after consuming alcoholic beverages at the restaurant.
The man continued to drink alcohol at the establishment until the “last call” was made by the bartender.
After leaving the restaurant, the man collided with an 18-wheeler on Trenton Road in Edinburg, less than a mile from the Applebee’s. The crash almost decapitated the man, according to court documents
Police at the scene stated that the man had a blood alcohol content level of 0.25, over three times the legal limit to operate a vehicle.
The man suffered brain damage in the crash, according to court documents. He brought a lawsuit against RMH Franchise Corporation, which runs over a dozen Applebee’s locations in Texas, and the bartender on shift that night in May 2021.
In the lawsuit, the man blames the defendants for continuing to serve him alcohol when he was intoxicated, violating TABC rules and regulations. He also places blame on them for failing to call him a ride-share vehicle or the police to take him home.
The Hidalgo County man is seeking more than $1 million in the lawsuit for physical pain and impairment, mental anguish, loss of wages, and medical expenses, among other reasons.
RMH Franchise Corporation and the bartender responded to the lawsuit and rejected the claims that they violated TABC regulations. They instead place the blame on the man for the crash.
The case has continued into 2022, with a hearing taking place on Thursday for all parties to discuss matters in the case as it moves forward. No further dates have been scheduled so far in the case.