CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The organizers of Uptown Charlotte’s huge St. Patrick’s Day party, as well as a nightclub that took part in the celebration’s pub crawl, are being sued for wrongful death.
Relatives of Joshua Stone, who died March 16, 2013, allege party organizers RockHouse Events LLC and Roxbury Nightlife LLC encouraged excessive drinking, did not take meaningful precautions to prevent drunk driving and that it led to an innocent man’s death.
Stone, 30, was hit and killed on Unionville Indian Trail Road in Union County while riding his bicycle home from his job as a night shift cook at Panera Bread.
The lawsuit alleges Jason Orbison had a .21 blood alcohol level when he hit Stone with his truck and kept on going without stopping to help or call 911.
Orbison faces several charges as a result of that accident, including second-degree murder and felony hit and run, according to court records.
The lawsuit claims Orbison attended "Rich and Bennett's Thirteenth Annual St. Patrick's Day Pub Crawl,” organized by RockHouse Events LLC the night of the deadly hit and run. The suit also claims the Roxbury Nightclub participated in the event as a destination during the party’s pub crawl, and is where bartenders kept serving Orbison even though he was visibly drunk.
Lawyers say the Roxbury had been open for only a short time and was only licensed to sell alcohol as a private club to its members, not to the general public.
The lawsuit claims neither RockHouse, nor the Roxbury took meaningful precautions to ensure drunken party goers would use alternative transportation or discourage them from driving home, and thereby endangered the safety of others including Stone, the father of a 5-year-old girl.
Attorneys claim Orbison, who is also named in the lawsuit, hit Stone while driving 67 mph.
Stone landed on the hood, slid under the truck, was dragged 75 feet. He died from massive head trauma even though he wore a helmet.
NBC Charlotte contacted the party promoters, as well as the nightclub about the lawsuit, but did not hear back by the time of this writing.