Man blames the bartender for being run over by friend, losing leg

By Kyla Asbury | Dec 6, 2012

CHARLESTON – A man is suing the Cold Spot, LLC, after he claims a female bartender should have refrained from selling alcohol to him and his friends after they were visibly or noticeably intoxicated.

Jane Doe, the unknown female bartender, was also named as a defendant in the suit.

On July 30, 2011, Arlon Ray Anderson II was a patron at the Cold Spot along with Thomas H. Carte and Keith Mounts, according to a complaint filed Nov. 29 in Kanawha Circuit Court.

Anderson claims while at the Cold Spot, he, Carte and Mounts sat at the bar and were served continuously by Doe for the duration of their stay, which was approximately 1.5 hours.

During their stay at the Cold Spot, the three men each consumed approximately four beers and four shots of liquor, according to the suit. Upon exiting the Cold Spot, the three men were visibly intoxicated, it adds.

Anderson claims shortly after leaving the bar, they stopped at a nearby Go-Mart and while Mounts entered the Go-Mart, Anderson exited the vehicle to check something under the hood of the vehicle.

Carte, who had been sitting in the middle of the seat, slid over into the driver seat and depressed the gas pedal, according to the suit, and when he did so, the vehicle struck Anderson and forced him backward.

Anderson claims Carte gave the vehicle more gas and struck him again and he was carried by the vehicle across the parking lot and crushed against another parked car.

Due to the impact with the vehicles, Anderson’s right leg sustained a traumatic amputation below the knee and his left leg sustained serious compound fractures and lacerations, according to the suit.

Anderson claims he was transported by ambulance to the hospital and because the accident had caused some amputation of his right lower extremity through the tibia and fibula, the muscle was mangled and non-viable with tissue loss. Thus, the medical professional made the decision to perform an above-the-knee amputation, the suit says.

At the scene, the investigating officer found Carte to be too intoxicated to perform a field sobriety test. However, a preliminary breath sample placed Carte’s blood alcohol level at 0.254, according to the suit.

Anderson claims the bartender owed a statutory duty to him to refrain from selling alcohol to any person visibly or noticeably intoxicated.

The bartender breached her duty by continuing to sell alcohol to Carte after he became intoxicated and was visibly and noticeably showing signs of intoxication, according to the suit.

Anderson claims the bartender's breach of duty caused the motor vehicle collision and his injuries and damages.

The Cold Spot is liable because the bartender was acting as its employee, according to the suit, and it was negligent in hiring her.

Anderson claims the Cold Spot negligently retained the bartender's employment and knew or should have known that the failure to carefully select and retain employees and/or agents would increase the risk of injury to patrons.

The Cold Spot had a duty to exercise reasonable care to prevent Carte from causing Anderson’s injuries and breached its duty by failing to take any reasonable action to protect him, according to the suit.

Anderson is seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. He is being represented by S. Brooks West II.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Charles E. King.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 12-C-2367

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