Paul West, former chief financial officer of the company that owns the chain of Sherlock's bars, has filed a new and improved TABC complaint against the company, in connection with a fatal shooting outside the River Oaks Sherlock's.
West complained that the River Oaks location's dollar-a-drink happy hours begged for the kind of trouble that ended up in a shooting death. Culturemap wrote about the complaint, quoting a Sherlock's spokesman as saying the business would operate "as usual." Taking great umbrage to this position, West fired off another TABC complaint -- including a copy of the story -- "due to the intransigent attitude of principals Lawrence (a.k.a. 'Larry') Martin and Edgar Carlson...."
West also told Hair Balls that the company's decision to cut back on security and utilize a somewhat inexperienced manager -- combined with the super-cheap drinks -- at the River Oaks location was egregious. He said that he was against the dollar happy hour from its inception. (Not against it enough to quit, though. After all, money was money, no?)
Meanwhile, West is trying to make money off Martin's and Carlson's company, Hospitality USA. Along with minority HUSA shareholder Bill Dearing, West has sued Martin and Carlson in Harris County District Course for breach of contract.
Citing his former gig at Landry's, West's suit states that "under West's guidance, [HUSA] was able to secure a significant cash surplus. Banks that considered extending credit to the venture looked favorably on West's status as partner due to his significant financial background."
Because of West's reputation, the company was apparently able to build new locations and attract douche-heavy crowds throughout Texas and Oklahoma. West's suit states he was promised an interest in some of the locations, but that Martin and Carlson never followed through.
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For his part, Dearing claims that "On or about the 15th anniversary of the opening of the original Sherlock's Pub, Martin and Carlson told Dearing, 'Happy 15th Anniversary. We Want a divorce,'" and subsequently fired Dearing and withheld back payments.
Martin and Carlson, who didn't return calls for comment, filed a general denial of the claims. They also moved to have West's and Dearing's lawyer removed from the case, because it's the same lawyer who represented Hospitality USA (and thus West and Dearing) in an earlier sexual harassment complaint. Confusing, no?
We're not sure what to think of West filing this complaint. He is, after all, trying to collect on money that comes in part from the River Oaks Sherlock's. And if he weren't allegedly squeezed out of the company, wouldn't he be just as responsible as he believes Martin and Carlson are?
We'll keep our eye on it.