Advertisement

You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Family sues Anchorage bar where airman drank before fatal collision

Jan. 7, 2014 - 02:57PM   |  
  • Filed Under

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA — The family of an Anchorage woman who was killed in a traffic collision has filed a lawsuit against the bar where authorities say the driver charged in the death acknowledged drinking heavily before the crash.

The lawsuit accuses Chilkoot Charlie’s and Lane Douglas Wyatt of liability in the death of 20-year-old Citari Townes-Sweatt last year.

“If you’re going to be serving someone, you have to do it in a responsible manner, and they play a role in this tragic death,” said Darryl Thompson, the family’s attorney. “It’s pretty clear this kid was served a lot of booze at Chilkoot’s.”

The murder and other charges accuse Wyatt, a Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson airman, of running a red light about 5 a.m. June 30 in east Anchorage, slamming into a car driven by Townes-Sweatt. The criminal trial for Wyatt, 23, is set for March. He is charged with second-degree murder, drunken driving, manslaughter and seven counts of assault.

After the crash, Wyatt’s blood-alcohol level was .196, more than twice the legal limit, according to prosecutors.

The civil lawsuit was filed Nov. 22 by attorneys for Lanita Sweatt-Sanders, the Anchorage Daily News reported.

Wyatt’s attorney in the civil case could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday.

Chilkoot Charlie’s co-owner Mike Gordon places responsibility for the death with Wyatt. He declined to talk in detail about the civil case.

“We had safety procedures in place that the driver chose not to avail himself of, including a taxi we would have provided and, as I understand it, a military walk through that night that would have provided him a ride back to (base) as well,” Gordon said in an email. He also questioned what Wyatt was doing after he left the bar.

Base officials have declined to say whether Wyatt and his friends were believed to have been drinking on base after leaving Chilkoot Charlie’s.

Wyatt recently has been living in Wasilla and working at JBER, according to Alaska Pretrial Services. The organization said Wyatt must take several breathalyzer tests a day while out on bail and he also wears an ankle monitor.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan
Rates

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Air Force Times

This Week's Air Force Times

U.S. military shifting gears in Europe
'Center of gravity' heads east amid new tensions

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

Classifieds
MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.
   Last Post: garhkal
        Apr 19, 2014 3:13 PM
   Last Post: garhkal
        Apr 15, 2014 4:55 PM
   Last Post: Shaken1976
        Apr 15, 2014 5:13 PM
Handbooks

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook