Monongalia man sues bar after he was attacked

MORGANTOWN -- A Monongalia County man has filed suit against a bar, its owner and an underage individual, whom he says attacked him after he was served alcohol. Philip B. Finley was attacked by Shawn Gifford at Z Club in Morgantown on Feb. 16, 2007, according to the complaint filed Nov. 20 in Monongalia Circuit Court. Gifford was instigated by a larger disturbance caused by other individuals who were younger than 21 and drinking at the bar illegally with the full knowledge of Z Club's owners, the suit states. Because of Gifford's attack, Finley claims he suffered pain and mental anguish, incurred medical expenses and sustained permanent scarring, disfigurement and medical conditions requiring future treatment. He also has suffered an impairment, loss of his ability to enjoy life, annoyance, inconvenience and other mental and emotional suffering, according to the complaint. Z Club and its owner, Robert Lightner, were negligent because they had a legal duty to refrain from serving alcohol to people under the age of 21 or to intoxicated people, the suit states. However, they breached their duty when they sold alcohol to people under the age of 21 and to intoxicated people, Finley claims. Lightner and Z Club also negligently failed to train, manage or supervise their employees to prevent the sale of alcohol to those under the age of 21 and to those intoxicated, according to the complaint. Lightner and Z Club had a duty to provide security adequate to protect Z Club patrons from the type of violence Finley suffered, but they also breached that duty, the suit states. Finley is seeking unspecified compensatory damages, plus prejudgment and post-judgment interest, costs, attorney's fees, unspecified punitive damages and other relief the Court deems just. He is represented by David Grunau of Morgantown. Monongalia Circuit Court case number: 08-C-884

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