In January of '14, a Pennsylvania jury found Timothy Lesko and the Pittsburgh Elks Club liable for $28 million in compensatory and punitive damages due to Lesko driving while intoxicated which led two deaths and two victims with injuries.
This was the fourth largest “Dram Shop” Law award in 20 years. The jury attributed 40% liability to the Elks Lodge and 60% liability to Lesko. The Elks Lodge held a “Gun Bash” event which was billed as “all you can eat and drink” with unlimited food and beer provided. Attendees could serve themselves at unmonitored drink stations. Lesko had consumed more than 10 beers, began to exhibit slurred speech, glassy eyes and a staggering gait according to some witnesses; however 20 witnesses testified that he showed no signs of intoxication.
Leuko was at the event for two hours. The liver can only process the alcohol contained in a 12oz. beer at a rate of one an hour, which means that after two hours he was at least eight beers beyond what his liver could process and that was proven when his blood alcohol level tested out at .226, almost three times the legal limit. Lesko left the event and less than a 1/4 mile away was traveling at a speed of 70 miles and crossed the center lane, hitting a car head-on and killing William Grice and Jessica Trail while severely injuring Amanda Delval Jessica and Michael Trail.
Typically a can of beer has a wholesale cost of about 50 cents. Beer, or any other alcohol served irresponsibly can be very costly. Tragically two lives were cut short and two others were horribly injured. In this case each can ended up costing nearly $3 million dollars a piece in damages.
Tennessee requires all servers of alcohol to have a Server Permit which can be obtained after successfully passing an alcohol responsibility class. Restaurant Class offers the 6-hour ServSafe Alcohol class which is approved by the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission. Our instructors teach the class in person with the course book provided. The 40-question exam is given electronically and as soon as you finish, you will learn if you have passed and if so, can apply for your server permit.