In May 2007, the Southeast Texas Record reported that a night out for Mexican food turned into more than just "another Casa Ole day" for Mary Kelly, a handicapped woman who sued the restaurant chain.

And although Kelly's suit against Case Ole settled more than a year ago, the case is still cluttering courthouse dockets, as the restaurant has not yet paid the settlement proceeds.

A hearing to enforce the settlement was slated for July 6 in Judge Milton Shuffield's 136th District Court. However, attorneys for Case Ole failed to keep their reservation and were a no show.

A court employee informed the Record that Case Ole claimed it never received notice of the hearing and requested the hearing be reset for a later date.

Kelly filed suit against Casa Ole on May 3, 2007, in Jefferson County District Court after a fall two years ago at the restaurant.

According to her petition, Kelly and her child went to the Casa Ole near Parkdale Mall on May 7, 2005, to eat supper. The suit says Kelly, whose disabilities are not described, used the handicap ramp to access the sidewalk.

"Upon reaching the sidewalk, something caused Mary Kelly to slip. As a result of Mary Kelly's slip, she was knocked unconscious," the petition states. "Upon regaining consciousness, Mary Kelly realized that she was in serious medical trouble."

Emergency personnel were contacted and Kelly was transported to Memorial Hermann Baptist Hospital in Beaumont. The plaintiff says she sustained "tremendous injury" from the fall.

"Mary Kelly's life has dramatically changed as a result of the personal injuries she suffered from the incident at defendant's place of business on May 7, 2005, where she was simply trying to enjoy a good meal," the plaintiff's lawyer wrote.

She alleged Casa Ole was negligent because it failed to properly maintain the sidewalk and should have known of the danger.

The settlement amount was not disclosed in court documents.

Dallas Barrington of Silsbee represents Kelly.

Case No. D179-239

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