Sunday, October 30, 2005

Halloween on Crockett Street

I went to the Brent Coon & Associates Halloween party on October 29, 2005, at Antone's. They had a Jimmy Buffett tribute band. They were okay. Afterwards, I went to the Black Cat Lounge and sat in the bar area until closing time.

At a bit after 2:00 a.m. when the bar closed, the elevators apparently were not working, and everyone was herded toward the stairs. There was a long line that was moving very slowly.

Although there was really nowhere to go until the line thinned out, a Black Cat employee was yelling at people to get out. When I say yelling to get out, I really mean yelling "get out." I was struck by the rudeness of it as well as the futility, given the fact that there was no way to get out until the line at the door cleared. I've been in a lot of bars at closing time, and I've never seen that sort of behavior.

After yelling for several minutes, while there was still a large crowd blocking the door, this same Black Cat employee came over to the area where I was sitting. He came up behind a chair that another person was sitting in and pushed the chair over, dumping the person out of the chair and onto the floor. This person was minding his own business and had made no belligerent or aggressive move of any kind towards the Black Cat employee. It was completely unprovoked.

As I got up to leave, I said "you're an asshole." The Black Cat employee turned to me and said "what did you say?," and I looked him in the eye and said "you're an asshole." He apparently didn't like this, and he pushed me into a couple of chairs. I did not respond to this assault physically or verbally (I'm still recovering from some fractured ribs and vertebrae, after all).

As several other people ushered me towards the stairs (in the normal bar-clearing fashion, i.e., without resorting to physical violence), I tried to find out this employee's name so I could register a complaint and possibly file criminal charges. I was told that his name was Paul, but I have no way of knowing whether that was really his name.

I think I should do something, but I'm not sure what. It's one thing when a bouncer in a bar gets physical with an aggressive drunk. It's another thing entirely when he thinks he can resort to physical abuse just because people aren't moving fast enough for him or tell him he's an asshole when he's being an asshole.

At a bare minimum, I think that the management needs to sit this guy down and have a long talk with him. But I really think he needs to be fired. And if the management approved of his actions, they need to be fired too. What this guy did to the guy in the chair and to me was criminal assault, a class A misdemeanor, in violation of ยง 22.01 of the Penal Code. What do y'all think I should do? File a complaint with the cops, complain to the management, or nothing at all? Or did I get what I deserved?

And don't say "sue the bar." Although he was acting in the course and scope of his employment and the bar would certainly be vicariously liable, I believe my employer owns a piece of it.

And for the record, I wasn't intoxicated and I have witnesses. And he was bigger than me.

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Anonymous Dorothy said...

Do not let this guy off the hook. Return to the bar -in person. Demand to speak to the owner/manager. Get as many details as you can about who owns the bar (easily enough since liquor license must be public information). Write a letter and copy as many people as you can. I'd go for revocking (is that spelled correctly?) their liquor license because they employ a maniac who cannot control his impulses. Very dangerous to have such a crazy person in an establishment that sells liquor. Hell! Copy the ATF!

Sunday, October 30, 2005 6:59:00 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

You have the ATF on speed dial, don't you?

"avtwb" - a very tough, wise babe

Tuesday, November 08, 2005 10:35:00 PM  
Blogger Jack said...

ATF? Hell no. They'll just shoot your dog and burn your house down.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005 10:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Susan in St. Paul said...


So what have you decided to do about this?

I would file charges. Just because you felt okay later, or even next week, back injuries have a nasty habit of not showing up immediately, you should get it on record of some sort.

I am still as angry about this as I was last week when I heard about it, and I would still love to "speak" to this bouncer.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005 12:59:00 AM  
Blogger Dick said...

Your employer owning an interest in the bar certainly complicates matters. But obviously this bouncer doesn't need to be in such a line of work. Perhaps filing assault charges would get his attention and that of his employer. I also believe that by spreading the word of what happened by those of us who live in Beaumont and by refusing to patronize the place until some resolution to your liking takes place is also a way to maybe let management of the place know that they have a problem.

Saturday, November 12, 2005 7:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Susan in St. Paul said...

So does this mean you have decided to do nothing about it?

Friday, November 18, 2005 4:43:00 PM  

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