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Wrongful Death, Alcohol Liability, Substantial Publicity, Settlement

Defended a restaurant on the Outer Banks of North Carolina which was one of two establishments that served alcoholic beverages to a thirty-one-year-old female who became intoxicated and later ran a red light, crashing into a vehicle occupied by five teenagers. Four teenage girls between the ages of fifteen and sixteen were killed. The intoxicated driver was later convicted of four counts of second-degree murder and was sentenced to 80 years in prison. The estates of the deceased girls brought suit against the two bars that the intoxicated driver had been drinking at prior to the accident. The case was the subject of a 20/20 television news magazine segment, and the criminal matter was covered by Court TV. The firm was able to show through the use of toxicology and eyewitnesses that the intoxicated driver did not consume enough alcohol to become intoxicated while at the client's establishment and that she showed no signs of intoxication while there. The case settled in mediation with the insurance carrier for the firm's client settling for defense costs and the second bar paying a substantial, confidential sum.