TABC sting at Northgate bar

26,712 Views | 144 Replies | Last: 2 mo ago by Brian Alg
Chase
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AG
I bounced and worked doors for two bars in B/CS back in the early 90s and I can tell you 100% that once the TABC has it in for someone, they will do whatever it takes to make a case.

I was working the door one night and personally checked a girl's ID on the way in and it was valid. They still pulled a bartender over the bar by his freaking neck and/or hair and that valid ID was nowhere to be found on her once the TABC agent started checking things.
Rexter
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Yup. NY Sub was delivering beer, going by the book, and TABC shut that down in a hurry.
TexasAggie_02
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AG
I'm confused. The article says the sting happened in September, but then later says that it was parent's weekend
histag10
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Brian Alg
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@ TexasAggie_02
According to the Eagle article below, it was Sept. 16, 2016. I looked it up and it seems like that was a ring day. I am guessing that people are being loose with their terms. Ring day is a parent's weekend but it isn't Parents Weekend.

The Eagle article below has more details.

https://www.theeagle.com/news/local/brazos-county-da-investigating-possible-perjury-by-tabc-agent/article_68510742-422f-11e9-acea-7fca6d9ba5f5.html
techno-ag
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Brian Alg said:

@ TexasAggie_02
According to the Eagle article below, it was Sept. 16, 2016. I looked it up and it seems like that was a ring day. I am guessing that people are being loose with their terms. Ring day is a parent's weekend but it isn't Parents Weekend.

The Eagle article below has more details.

https://www.theeagle.com/news/local/brazos-county-da-investigating-possible-perjury-by-tabc-agent/article_68510742-422f-11e9-acea-7fca6d9ba5f5.html
Good article. It's interesting the bartender is considering a civil suit. I would imagine that might be expensive unless the attorneys are willing to wait for a settlement to get paid.
No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!
Shife
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TexasAggie_02
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Thanks, I hadn't thought about fall ring day
Brian Alg
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I contacted County Attorney Anderson on Monday and District Attorney Parsons on Friday to let them know that I think this is a big problem.

County Attorney Anderson's statements to the Eagle and the Chronicle indicate that he does not think this is a big deal. Parsons told me that his office does not comment on cases that they are looking at or investigating. Parsons may well believe that if a TABC agent breaks the law they are entrusted to enforce and then testifies falsely under oath that someone else committed the crime, they should face severe consequences. But given County Attorney Anderson does not seem to appreciate the gravity of this, I do not want to take that for granted.

County Attorney and District Attorney are both elected positions. I am considering putting together an informal petition to let them know that some people think this is a big deal. If anyone thinks it could be worded better, or that there is a better way to go forward with this, I would be super appreciative of any feedback. I asked CA Anderson if there was a better way to change his mind about the gravity of Jergins' actions and I have not heard back from him.

I was thinking something like the following:

County Attorney Rod Anderson and District Attorney Parsons,

The undersigned believe:

1. TABC agents that violate the laws they are entrusted to enforce should not be shown greater leniency than other citizens.
2. If TABC agents are not expected to tell the truth in their reports and on the stand, their reports and testimony should not be used as evidence.
3. If TABC agents are expected to tell the truth in their reports and on the stand, they should face serious consequences when they are not truthful.
Gibbs Slap
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AG
Brian Alg
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I am also trying to get a hold of the folks at TABC. The local office did not pick up the phone (no voicemail either) and the Austin office did not have a Lieutenant available to speak with me, so I left a voice mail. They indicated that I should give them until Tuesday to return my call. Given that TABC is under review by the Sunset Commission this session, I think time is of the essence. So if anyone at TABC is reading this, please let me know a good way to contact y'all.

The big thing I am trying to figure out from TABC is if the protocols that Agent Jergins and the other agent (Meyer?) were operating under were flawed in Sept 2016 and fixed now (which would be great) or if there are changes that still need to be made.

In case there are changes that TABC cannot handle themselves, I spoke with Rep. Raney and Sen. Schwertner's offices. So they are aware of the situation, but I am not sure if there is anything for them to do at this point. I hope TABC already has things under control.

I am still hoping County Attorney Anderson will clarify his position on this. Doing a petition would be a real pain. I would rather not have to follow through on that. His office said that he is out for the rest of the week but I am hoping he will email me soon to let me know a petition is not necessary.
birdman
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I think contacting the TABC is a waste of time.

The agent did exactly what TABC wanted him to do. Just don't get caught next time.
Stupe
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S
If Parsons thinks that there are enough grounds to file perjury charges, he will do it. If he doesn't, he won't.

A petition might be a nice gesture, but it isn't going to make a bit of difference as far as the decision of the DA's office.
expresswrittenconsent
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Stupe said:

If Parsons thinks that there are enough grounds to file perjury charges, he will do it. If he doesn't, he won't.

A petition might be a nice gesture, but it isn't going to make a bit of difference as far as the decision of the DA's office.

Yeah, sure. It's only about whether or not "Parsons thinks there is enough evidence". Nothing else at play.
Stupe
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S
If you think that Parsons caves to political pressure, you don't know much about him nor does anyone that stars that post.

He has very little patience for law enforcement personnel, of any jurisdiction, that don't play by the book and is definitely not a puppet of TABC.
Brian Alg
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@ Stupe

I met Parsons a while back and he seemed like a super nice guy. I am glad to hear he has a reputation for being a straight shooter. I didn't know anything about his or Anderson's reputations regarding this kind of thing. All I have to go on are Anderson's statements (which I hope he clarifies).

But I think that a petition would be useful in letting people know that something went terribly wrong. It could let the powers that be know that many people think that it should not happen again. The powers that be may well not need the reminder, but all I have seen are statements from CA Anderson (who seemed to think this is not a problem) and one spokesman from the TABC (who also seemed oddly cavalier about the whole thing).

I know that the DAs office moving forward will take some time. I mean, this first Frick trial was over 2 years after the event.
Aggieangler93
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This part was telling for me:

Greening questioned the agent next. "It would have been against policy for you to receive the beer from [Frick] and then give it to [the teenager], is that right?"


"Well," Jergins answered, "it wouldn't have happened that way."

Note...he does not say "It didn't happen that way....".

If he was there, and he was acting in an official capacity on the sting, which I believe we can all agree he was, why doesn't he know (or want to say), what actually happened? Why did he fill out a report and make his case, knowing he was lying, when that one detail makes or breaks the case? And then he describes it with what would have happened? That doesn't pass the sniff test.

I agree that this is poor discovery, at minimum, by the prosecutor in the case. The way he gave his answer to this question makes me wonder if it was rehearsed or he was coached. I may be reading too much into it, but it just makes me wonder, what if? I don't have any way to know if he was or not...
GIG 'EM - Class of '93
Dad of Class of '22
Aggieangler93
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Does anyone know what disciplinary actions have been taken against the agent or is this still under investigation? I would hope, as a Texas taxpayer, that this type of lying, would be a firing offense by TABC, and I would also hope the guy would loses his peace officer's license in Texas. He's intentionally lying, to make a case against someone, who from the accounts, does not seem to be guilty of a crime in this situation, without the lie being told.

Seems like the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement website indicates that if the complaint is not handled adequately at the local jurisdictional level, against a licensed Peace Officer, which I assume he has to be to hold that position, that the Texas Rangers are the next stop for doing an investigation?

I wonder if that would come into play here?
GIG 'EM - Class of '93
Dad of Class of '22
australopithecus robustus
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Nobody's talking about the bar itself. I wonder if they can get their fine refunded and the case taken off their file??

When TABC writes cases, one goes against the bar under the alcoholic beverage code against the permit, and one goes against the individual criminally. The two cases are prosecuted completely differently.
Brian Alg
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@Aggieangler93

I don't have the full transcript yet. But there is an article saying:

"Jergins said, 'But that's not the way it occurred, sir.'"

https://www.kxxv.com/news/local-news/surveillance-video-exonerates-bartender-shows-tabc-agent-giving-teen-alcohol


I don't think it is helpful to make speculations about gross corruption or anything. I think that all parties involved in this can come out of this situation a-okay if they just fix the way they do things going forward.


My wish list in this:

- County Attorney Anderson says "Given the nature of this work, I am not going to use TABC agent testimony regarding stings without A/V recordings. I suggest they start using body cameras."

- TABC says "We are going to start using body cameras to show the public that our agents are following the new and improved sting protocols."

- Bartenders on Northgate continue following the laws.

- TABC is happy that they don't have any fines to collect because everybody is following the rules.
Brian Alg
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@australopithecus robustus

Rebel seems to have been given a "Restrained" disposition according to TABC's violation records.


https://www.tabc.state.tx.us/training_and_certification/information_for_retailers.asp
australopithecus robustus
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restrained means that it's on their file but won't count against them for either 12 or 36 months. It's still on their file though. It shouldn't be on there at all given the current circumstances.
Stupe
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S
You seem to be reading a lot into a generic press release statement.
woodiewood1
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The gal should also be prosecuted for her part in the illegal action.
cajunken
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woodiewood1 said:

The gal should also be prosecuted for her part in the illegal action.

I never thought about that. If it was explained that she was "bait" to accept an alcoholic beverage from a server, but she accepted it from anyone else (even a TABC agent), wouldn't she be breaking a law? I think TABC is in for a world of legal hell about this.
Stupe
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S
For what crime?
91_Aggie
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Stupe said:

For what crime?


MiP fits
cslifer
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You have got to be kidding me.
expresswrittenconsent
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Is the identity of the girl known? Usually these teens are kids who have been busted trying to buy cigs under 18 or booze under 21 and have been coerced by the agent to work "undercover" with the agent to "work" off their charges/probation/etc.
australopithecus robustus
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She should be apologized to by the TABC, not prosecuted...
Stupe
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S
Quote:

MiP fits
No, it does not.
Accepting alcohol is in the scope of the sting.

Judging from what I read in the article, the guy needs to be brought up on perjury charges and if I were the bartender I would also hit him with a civil suit.

But wanting charges filed on the girl is a ridiculous witch hunt.
TLIAC
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91_Aggie said:

Stupe said:

For what crime?


MiP fits
What??? MIP does not fit. She was working under the "supervision" of a TABC agent. If we went by your standards and they had 6 good "buys" that night she would receive 6 MIP's. How does that even make sense?

Note: I am addressing the statement of the MIP here, not the actions of the agent.
91_Aggie
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TLIAC said:

91_Aggie said:

Stupe said:

For what crime?


MiP fits
What??? MIP does not fit. She was working under the "supervision" of a TABC agent. If we went by your standards and they had 6 good "buys" that night she would receive 6 MIP's. How does that even make sense?

Note: I am addressing the statement of the MIP here, not the actions of the agent.


Just throwing out the only thing that might fit. Since the TABC agent lied about what happened and becausr he gave her the drink illegally (basing that on the testimony) then it was not a valid "operation"

But im just playing devils advocate. I dont care. Agent needs to lose his job though. Cant have LEOs making up stuff to get a conviction.
Inca
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The minor had no control over whether the sting was legal or not. She was working undercover for the TABC. Any screw up by TABC does not affect her. Charges against her would be outrageous.
Brian Alg
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@Inca

That is my reading of the relevant law as well. She was pretty clearly "under the immediate supervision of a commissioned peace officer engaged in enforcing the provisions of this code."

When that is the case it looks like she is allowed to purchase and possess but not consume.

https://www.tabc.texas.gov/laws/alcoholic_beverage_Code_referencing_minors.asp



Also, I spoke with County Attorney Anderson. I am super appreciative of him taking the time to reach out to me. I am not able to exactly quote him or anything, but I think the following is a pretty accurate reflection of what I learned from the conversation.

CA Anderson believes that since the Sept 2016 incident TABC are using A/V recording more often. He would not require a recording in order to prosecute cases. For instance if a crime wasn't captured because of an equipment malfunction his office would still probably pursue it if everything else looked good. I asked him if there was anything his office would be doing to make sure that this wouldn't happen again. They would continue to make sure that agents are confident in their reports and I believe he expects them to have more detailed reports. I asked him if his office was going to charge Agent Jergins for furnishing alcohol to a minor. He did not have a comment on that and he pointed out that the District Attorney's office and TABC are investigating.

I am still waiting to hear back from TABC regarding what changes they have made to their minor sting procedures since September 2016.
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