Chapel Hill bar in triple-fatal lawsuit faced violation in April

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) – One of the Chapel Hill bars facing a lawsuit in a triple-fatal accident involving a student at the University of North Carolina had previous violations involving selling alcohol to minors in the spring.

The lawsuit, which was amended Monday, accused He’s Not Here and La Residence of  negligence.

The lawsuit said the two bars allowed Chandler Kania to drink at their establishments before he drove drunk and killed three people July 19. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the daughter of Darlene McGee, who was killed in the wreck.

The lawsuit accused the two Chapel Hill bars of having a pattern of serving alcohol to students who were not 21 years of age.

“We believe the sale of alcohol to underage college students is a pervasive problem that needs to be addressed so that we can prevent something like this from happening again. And to prevent the terrible nightmare that my client has to go through each and every day,” said Ryan Oxendine, attorney with Oxendine Barnes & Associates, who are representing the daughter of a victim.

Chandler Kania in court (file)
PHOTOS; UNC student faces charges after triple-fatal accident

The suit said the North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement branch “has been involved in multiple investigations in the past 18 months” of the two places selling alcohol to minors.

On Tuesday, the North Carolina Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission said He’s Not Here had a previous violation April 2. In that case, He’s Not Here was accused of selling to an underage person and had four counts of failing to determine age.

An ABC Commission spokeswoman said the case is pending.

He’s Not Here also was accused of selling to a person underage on March 21, 2014, and faced a $1,500 fine.

The ABC Commission said it had no reports of violations or sanctions involving La Residence over the 18 months before the crash.

La Residence did have a violation for selling to a person underage dating to April 1 of 2010 and faced a $2,400 fine. La Residence also had a violation from Feb. 7, 2008, for underage possession/consumption and paid a $900 fine.

Frances Gualtieri, the owner of La Residence, told WNCN Tuesday she did not have any comment on the lawsuit.


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