WPR News
7:27 pm
Wed February 16, 2011

Wyo. Supreme Court hears bar owner liability suit

Cheyenne, Wyo. – The Wyoming Supreme Court must decide whether to uphold state law protecting bar owners from legal action stemming from the actions of intoxicated patrons.

The court heard arguments Wednesday on a lawsuit filed by relatives of a couple killed by a drunken driver. The couple's relatives want to sue bar owners.

John and Carol Munkberg of Ten Sleep died in the 2008 Big Horn County crash. Police say 41-year-old Randall LaBrie of Malta, Mont., was driving drunk when he hit the Munkbergs' pickup. LaBrie and his two passengers also died.

A district judge last year dismissed the Munkberg survivors' lawsuit against bar owners Doug and Denny Freier. The judge noted that a 2003 state supreme court ruling said bar owners who legally serve alcohol aren't responsible for their patrons' actions.