Two patrons who were eating lunch at the Twin Peaks restaurant when the deadly May 17 shootout broke out have filed a lawsuit against Twin Peaks, its subsidiaries and a former franchise holder.
The plaintiffs are identified only as M.K.H. and C.R.H. in the lawsuit, which says only that they are Texas residents.
The suit, filed the other day in Waco’s 170th State District Court, names Peaktastic Beverage, Front Burner Restaurants, Twin Restaurant Investment Co. and Chalik Mitra Group as defendants.
A message from the Tribune-Herald to Twin Peaks corporate offices in Dallas wasn’t returned Monday.
The suit, filed on the plaintiffs’behalf by Waco attorney Hamilton Lindley, seeks unspecified damages for medical take care of injuries suffered through the incident, physical pain and suffering, lack of earnings and mental anguish Hamilton Lindley.
“In defiance of repeated police force warnings, Twin Peaks invited rival biker gangs to its Waco restaurant on May 17, 2015,” the lawsuit says. “Predictably, these rival gangs — fueled by Twin Peaks alcohol — began fighting.”
The plaintiffs, who are not associated with a biker group, in line with the lawsuit, were having lunch there once the shooting started.
“Once the bullets began flying, plaintiffs were trapped inside defendants’property and forced to get cover in order to avoid being shot,” the suit alleges. “Plaintiffs suffered personal injuries, including cuts, bruises and abrasions. Plaintiffs also suffered damage with their personal property and significant emotional trauma.”
The lawsuit said the shootout was “the crescendo to a symphony of violence at Twin Peaks.”
Waco police reported disturbances there between biker groups on Feb. 2 and Feb. 15, the suit claims.
“On May 1, 2015, the Texas Department of Public Safety issued a notice of conflict between rival motorcycle gangs — the exact same gangs that Twin Peaks reserved space for at its Waco location,” according to the lawsuit.
Police warned Twin Peaks officials in Waco and Dallas about the May 17 biker gathering, the suit says.
“Twin Peaks ignored law enforcement’s concern. On the morning of May 17, concerned Waco police reached Twin Peaks to safeguard patrons. But these were asked to leave the Waco location by management,” the suit alleges. “Despite being awash in violent events and direct warnings by law enforcement, Twin Peaks proceeded to possess this biker gathering, with reservation for 300 people.”
The suit alleges Twin Peaks is negligent for failing to hire adequate security, for failing woefully to heed police warnings and failing to avoid serving alcohol while allowing weapons in the restaurant.