On June 29, 2011, Syracuse personal injury lawyer Anthony S. Bottar filed a New York wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the wife and son of Robert B. Burkard, a 47 year old man who was killed when his car was struck on June 28, 2009 by a vehicle operated by Leo A. Coleman. Burkard’s widow and son also sustained serious injuries in the collision, which occurred at the intersection of County Routes 54 and 125. The named defendants are several Sackets Harbor establishments, including the Boathouse, Sackets Harbor Brew Pub and Good Fellos.
As reported in the Watertown Daily Times article titled “DWI Victim’s Widow Sues 3 Restaurants,” Coleman admitted that he was intoxicated at the time of the accident and now is serving time in state prison.
Under New York State Dram Shop laws, all businesses that serve alcohol to customers have a duty to ensure that they do not provide alcoholic beverages to customers that are visibly intoxicated. A restaurant or bar that serves alcohol to a patron that is visibly drunk (or who may be drunk given the number of alcoholic beverages consumed over a given time period) may be liable for damages caused by the intoxicated customer, including personal injuries that arise out of a car accident that occurs after the customer leaves the bar.