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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. BUFFALO TAVERN (08/01/88)

decided: August 1, 1988.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, PENNSYLVANIA LIQUOR CONTROL BOARD, APPELLANT
v.
BUFFALO TAVERN, INC., APPELLEE. BUFFALO TAVERN, INC., THE MANGY MOOSE, APPELLANT V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, PENNSYLVANIA LIQUOR CONTROL BOARD, APPELLEE



Appeals from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Clinton County in the case of Buffalo Tavern, Inc., t/a The Mangy Moose v. Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, No. 62-87.

COUNSEL

Felix Thau, Deputy Chief Counsel, with him, Kenneth B. Skelly, Chief Counsel, for appellant.

Peter P. Griffin, for appellee.

Judges Craig and Palladino, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Palladino.

Author: Palladino

[ 118 Pa. Commw. Page 307]

These consolidated cases involve cross-appeals by Buffalo Tavern, Inc., t/a The Mangy Moose, (Licensee) and the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (LCB) from an order of the Clinton County Court of Common Pleas concluding that Licensee had violated section 493(16) of the Liquor Code*fn1 but modifying the LCB's penalty of a $750 fine for this violation to a $500 fine. We affirm in part and reverse in part.

Jeffery Bowman, a corporate officer of Licensee and owner of the building in which Licensee's premises are located, allowed Richard Khork to hold a private party at Licensee's premises on a Sunday. Licensee's liquor license did not permit it to sell alcoholic beverages on Sundays. Khork paid for all the food and drink to be consumed at the party. He purchased two half kegs of beer from Licensee during the week before the Sunday party, which were kept on Licensee's premises after purchase. Thirty-eight people were invited to the party and $2 was requested from each to defray the costs of the steaks. Bowman was one of the invited guests and he attended the party. On Sunday morning prior to party beginning Khork testified that he asked Bowman to tap the beer kegs and that Bowman did so. N.T. at 22-23.

LCB enforcement officer Terry Rinehart entered Licensee's premises at 4:20 PM on the Sunday the party was held. He observed approximately 30 individuals on

[ 118 Pa. Commw. Page 308]

    the premises, some with beer and mixed drinks. He saw a male behind the bar serving beer and noted a couple of women in the kitchen. Rinehart spoke with Bowman and departed the premises within five minutes.

As a result of Rinehart's investigation, the LCB issued a citation to Licensee, charging Licensee with having sold, furnished and/or given alcoholic beverages on a Sunday during hours when such sales were prohibited. Subsequent to a hearing, the LCB, on January 13, 1987, issued an opinion in which it stated:

WHEREAS, evidence produced at [the] hearing established the following finding of fact(s): The licensee, by its servants, agents or employes, sold, furnished and/or gave liquor and/or malt or brewed beverages on Sunday, ...


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