WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — A wrongful death lawsuit filed against a Franklin bar by a Brentwood officer’s widow has been settled, according to her attorneys.
Officer Destin Legieza was killed in a crash on June 18, 2020. Investigators said Ashley Kroese was driving the wrong way on Franklin Road without her headlights on when she slammed into Officer Legieza’s police car, fatally injuring him
An arrest warrant alleges Kroese’s blood alcohol content was .16, twice the legal limit.
Heather Legieza, the wife of Officer Legieza, later filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the bar Kroese was reportedly at before getting into her vehicle that night.
The lawsuit was filed against Kimbro’s Pickin Parlor, known as Kimbro’s, a live music venue with a bar in Williamson County. The suit claims around midnight on June 18, 2020, a Kimbro’s employee began serving alcoholic beverages to Kroese.
The Kimbro’s employee who served the beverages to Kroese knew she had consumed alcoholic beverages earlier that night, the lawsuit alleges. It also states the Kimbro’s employee continued to serve alcoholic beverages to Kroese for several hours, even though the employee knew she was “visibly intoxicated.”
In a statement, Kimbro’s repeatedly said it did not know where Kroese was or what she was doing for “several hours” before the 4:40 a.m. collision, according to the lawsuit.
The Law Offices of John Day represents Heather Legieza in the suit and has said nearby surveillance video shows the Kimbro’s manager walking Kroese to her car around 4:30 a.m., minutes before the fatal crash. Her attorneys also said a Kimbro’s employee told friends the next day that Kroese was so intoxicated, the bar’s staff fed her potato chips and encouraged her to sleep there to sober up.
Legieza’s attorneys revealed Friday morning that Kimbro’s agreed to pay a settlement, though the exact amount was not disclosed.
Tennessee law permits the spouse of a person killed by an intoxicated driver to bring a wrongful death lawsuit against a bar or restaurant who sold alcohol to the driver, according to The Law Offices of John Day.
The criminal case against Kroese is ongoing. She is expected to appear in court Monday.