By ZEINAB NAJM
DEARBORN — One of the two bars that drunken driver Joey Bailey visited before killing the Abbas family of five in a wrong-way crash on I-75 has admitted to over-serving, will pay a $10,000 fine and serve a 10-day suspension.
Horseshoes Kentucky Grill & Saloon in Lexington reached the agreement with the Lexington Alcoholic Beverage Control Office on April 9 with the establishment pleading guilty to serving an intoxicated person. The suspension will prohibit the bar from selling alcohol from May 17 to 26.
Also, employees of the Horseshoes Kentucky Grill & Saloon are required to undergo retraining and certification on responsible alcohol service. The establishment admitted to serving Bailey, 41, drinks even when he was showing signs of intoxications.
The agreement comes on the same day a lawsuit was filed in the Fayette Circuit Court by Abbas family relatives against Horseshoes, Roosters Wings, and Bailey’s estate.
According to the Lexington Police Department report, Bailey was served at least three double white Russians and two 22-ounce beers at Roosters in Georgetown before going to Horseshoes. While at Horseshoes, Bailey drank at least one beer and four double white Russians, the police report said. Attorneys for the Abbas family are seeking compensation and punitive from both bars and Bailey’s estate.
On March 28, ACCESS announced the establishment of the Abbas Family Red Wagon Endowed Fund, a charitable trust inspired by the Abbas family’s tradition of pulling a red wagon filled with presents delivering gifts in their Northville neighborhood.
According to the website, the fund housed at the Center for Arab American Philanthropy, supports, “small and large projects within Arab American communities, as well as other communities, focusing on breaking down barriers through advocacy, access to healthcare, education, and other initiatives that aim to center marginalized voices and promote empowerment, equity, and healing.”
A potion of any money won from the lawsuit will be placed in to the fund honoring the family.
“For the surviving family members, as well as for their many friends left behind, the nightmare and grief caused by that crash will never go away,” said Greg Bubalo, an attorney representing the Abbas family. “By filing the lawsuit, the family hopes to hold those responsible accountable and ensure that this type of tragedy does not occur to another family. This is a second time fatalities have been alleged to have resulted from over-serving alcohol by Horseshoes.”
About 2:30 a.m. Jan. 6, the Abbas family, real estate agent and lawyer Issam Abbas, 42; his wife, Dr. Rima Abbas, 38; and their children, Ali, 14, Isabella, 13, and Giselle, 7, were killed on northbound I-75 in Lexington, Ky., as they drove home from a trip to Florida.
Bailey’s pickup truck crashed into the Abbas’ Cadillac Escalade when he was driving with a blood alcohol level of .306 in a state that has a legal limit of .08, according to a toxicology report from the Fayette County Coroner Gary Ginn.
The Lexington Police Department said based on 911 phone calls, Bailey was possibly traveling the wrong way for six miles, ending at the crash scene. When the crash occurred, the Escalade caught fire but the pickup truck did not.
“After leaving Horseshoes, it is believed that Bailey drove his 2015 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck onto the northbound lanes of I-75 beginning at the 113 mile marker,” a Lexington police press release said. “A review of the truck’s event data recorder by the police department’s Collision Reconstruction Unit found that Bailey was driving at interstate speeds of 70-80 miles per hour when the collision occurred.”
According to family members, the Florida trip was postponed for the funeral of Rima Abbas’s grandmother on Dec. 24, causing the family to return on Sunday instead of Saturday night.
(Zeinab Najm can be reached at [email protected].)