David Yates Aug. 25, 2015, 11:00am


Known as a cheap watering hole by most veterans, the Beaumont American Legion recently answered a lawsuit alleging a patron collapsed in her chair while playing bingo.

Seeking an award of punitive damages for alleged gross negligence, Irene Gardiner filed suit against American Legion Auxiliary Unit No. 33 and the 11th Street Bingo Association on May 6 in Jefferson County District Court.

Court records show the American Legion answered the suit on June 12, asserting a general denial and maintaining that Gardiner’s own negligence or a third party caused the incident.

In her suit, Gardiner alleges that on Aug. 22, 2013, she was playing bingo at the establishment when the chair she sat in collapsed, severely injuring her.

She maintains the American Legion set up the chairs and tables for customers to play bingo but failed to inspect the condition of the chairs and warn invitees.

“Defendant acted with a conscious indifference or reckless disregard for the rights, safety, and welfare of plaintiff,” the suit states.

On top of punitive damages, Gardiner is suing for her past and future medical expenses, pain, mental anguish and impairment.

Beaumont attorney John Parsons of the Lindsay Lindsay & Parsons law firm represents her.

The American Legion is represented by David Medack, attorney for the Houston law firm Heard & Medack.

Judge Kent Walston, 58th District Court, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. A197-083

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