Barry's exterior

Barry's Bar and Grill exterior.

State liquor regulators slapped Barry's with an $8,000 fine after the Lincoln bar's owners pleaded guilty to selling a drunk 19-year-old a bottle of Captain Morgan in April.

The bar and restaurant at Ninth and Q streets entered the pleas at a hearing before the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission on Wednesday. 

In exchange, the Nebraska Attorney General's Office dismissed two other cases against the bar.

Lincoln police noticed the minor during a tavern check at Barry's, then took him to detox, commission executive director Hobert Rupe said.

The commission gave Barry's a 40-day suspension for serving an intoxicated person and 40 more days for serving a minor.

Bars commonly opt to pay the $100-per-day fine rather than close down for their suspensions.

The pleas put Barry's on "thin ice," Rupe said.

Barry's now has had three violations for selling to an intoxicated person in the last four years, Rupe said.

Should the owners get in trouble for that same offense, they could face cancellation — the punishment outlined in the commission's guidelines for a fourth offense, he said.

Commission Chairman Bob Batt of Omaha said Thursday that Barry's owners have taken responsibility for what happened and have taken steps to address the problem.

The owners, from Richmond Rollins LLC in Mission Hills, Kansas, told the commission they have increased training and added security, Batt said.

The 19-year-old man's identification needed more scrutiny than bar staff gave it on April 20, Batt said.

But it wasn't counterfeit.

This fine should bring the busy bar, which caters to a college crowd, into compliance, Batt said.

And the case should serve as a warning to drinkers who like Barry's, he said.

Underage drinkers threaten the livelihood of establishments such as Barry's and the bar staff that works there, Batt said.

"It’s really not a nice thing to do to a bar, besides the fact that it’s dangerous,” he said.

Reach the writer at 402-473-2657 or rjohnson@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSRileyJohnson.

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Reporter

Riley Johnson reports on breaking news and public safety issues in Lincoln and southeast Nebraska.

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