Lawsuit: Bars Played Role In Deadly DUI Crash

Posted On January 30, 2012

(Cincinnati, Oh.) – Two Cincinnati bars are targeted in a new lawsuit after two women from the Harrison area died in a drunk driving crash two years ago.


Nicole Riddle, of West Harrison, and her fiancé Wesley Krause, of Sunman, were out drinking the evening of February 4, 2010. They had made a good decision not to drive home and called Krause’s mother, Mary Krause, of Harrison, to pick them up.


As the group drove home on Interstate 74 in Hamilton County’s Green Township, their car was rear-ended at high speed by a Jeep driven by Michelle Knapp.


Knapp was found after the accident to have a BAC of .136, over Ohio’s legal driving limit of .08. The 25-year-old had been drinking earlier in the evening at two bars in Western Hills: TGI Fridays and the Pirates Den.


After pleading guilty to two counts of Aggravated Vehicular Homicide, Knapp was ordered to serve eight years in prison when sentenced the August following the tragic accident that a new lawsuit claims was avoidable.


The lawsuit was filed on Thursday, January 26 in a Hamilton County court representing the Estate of Mary Kraus, the Estate of Nicole Riddle, and Wesley Krause.


Several defendants are listed including: Ohio Valley Bistros, Inc. doing business as TGI Fridays; Golden Dome Properties LLC doing business as Pirates Den and Patio; bar owner Lawrence Hemsath; Rian Umbach; and five John Does.


The plaintiffs claim the two bars were negligent in serving Knapp drinks when she was already intoxicated.




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