Prosecution drops charges against Lydiard Street, The Deck and Uptown bars | The mail


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The prosecution dropped criminal charges against two Ballarat bars following court hearings that found administrative errors. Alexandria Tea Rooms and Downtown Piano Bar, the licensed names of bars operating at The Deck and Uptown on Lydiard Street, were charged with supplying alcohol to an intoxicated person. Members of the police brought the charges after a woman was taken to hospital when she started vomiting and fell ill at the scene in October 2020. A hearing was held at the Magistrates’ Court in Ballarat in February when the company’s defense lawyer said the charges were disputed because staff were unaware the woman was intoxicated when serving her. Defense attorney John Larkins said another key issue in the case was “what ultimately caused his condition”. “She had certainly consumed a good amount of alcohol, but there is an allegation that she was interfered with by another customer in the toilet, which is unfortunately not a unique circumstance in today’s world. in bars,” he said during the February hearing. At this hearing, the prosecution sought to amend the charges to include Pty Ltd alongside the company names after they were mistakenly omitted. The existing names on the charge sheet were unincorporated entities. The defense said this could not be done as it had been over 12 months since the date of the alleged offence. The matter was adjourned for investigation into the matter to be made. Police prosecutor Senior Constable Giles Brown withdrew both charges in court on Tuesday. “We are very pleased with that, Your Honor,” Mr. Larkins said. “I’m sure you are,” replied Magistrate Hugh Radford. The same owner runs The Deck and Uptown which are separate upstairs and downstairs venues in a building on Lydiard Street. Mr Larkin spoke to The Courier on Tuesday afternoon after the short court hearing and said there were technical and substantive challenges in pursuing the case. “With regard to the totality of the circumstances of what happened, we felt that we could have been found not guilty,” he said. “He (the owner) is relieved and feels vindicated. He took a stand and was ready to defend the case. “These are tough places to deal with. You have to be very very diligent about how you take care of your guests and customers and (the owner) goes to great lengths to do so. “It was a difficult level to deal with and difficult to explain. He was at least on site and had a discussion with the police at the time and he followed it.” If you see this message, you are a loyal digital subscriber to The Courier, as we have made this story available only to subscribers. Thank you so much for your support and for allowing us to continue to tell the story of Ballarat. We appreciate your support for journalism in our great city.



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