Dram shop liability

As we mentioned in Morning Docket, Rick’s Cabaret has been served with a lawsuit alleging that the gentleman’s establishment over-served one of its patrons.

Of course, nobody would care about alleged over-serving if the guy had come home from the strip club and beat his wife. In the instant case, a man left Rick’s and drove around at 130 mph with no headlights on, eventually slamming into another car and killing a high school senior.

The driver, Erasmo Ramirez, survived the crash and is serving 15 years for intoxicated manslaughter. The family of the victim is suing Rick’s for its program that gives employees incentives for how many drinks they sell.

I know that you are shocked, shocked to find out that strip clubs want employees to get out there and sell drinks….

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Gerald Ung (left) and Edward DiDonato Jr. (right)

This shouldn’t come as a shock; we predicted it last February, when the criminal case ended in acquittal. But Eddie DiDonato Jr., a former lacrosse star at Villanova and the son of a prominent partner at the Fox Rothschild law firm, has filed a civil lawsuit against Gerald Ung, the Temple Law School student who shot DiDonato in January 2010 in the Old City section of Philadelphia.

Gerald Ung isn’t the only defendant. DiDonato is suing a half dozen other parties, relying on various theories of liability. Let’s think of this as a Torts final exam: Who else might DiDonato be suing besides Ung? What causes of action can you see?

Let’s take a closer look at the lawsuit, filed on behalf of DiDonato by one of Pennsylvania’s leading personal injury lawyers….

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