Burbank Sues to Enforce Closure Order Against Tinhorn Flats

BURBANK (CNS) - The city of Burbank is seeking a judge's permission to cut off the electricity of a local restaurant and padlock the doors in order to enforce its closure order to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit, filed Monday, takes aim at the Tinhorn Flats Saloon & Grill on Magnolia Boulevard. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health previously revoked the eatery's health permit and the Burbank City Council last month revoked its conditional-use permit.

The city wants the restaurant declared an ongoing public nuisance, and wants officials to be granted permission to padlock the doors and shut off the electricity until the owners bring the establishment into compliance with the mandated coronavirus health orders.

“Defendants' continued operations without a public health permit and CUP, especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, demonstrates defendants' flagrant flouting of the code, regulations, rules and standards required for health and safety practices in businesses such as restaurants,'' the suit states. “Allowing this to go unchecked could embolden other restaurants and facilities to flout the same permit requirements, which would further undermine public health and safety.''

A representative for the restaurant could not be immediately reached for comment Tuesday.

The county and city actions took place after numerous complaints were received about the Tinhorn's continued offering of outdoor dining on its patio in violation of the applicable health officer orders at a time when such activity was banned in Los Angeles County, according to the suit. The ban was relaxed in late January.

“The vast majority of restaurants did their part and acted as good citizens by complying with these orders, despite the tremendous difficulty and hardship they have suffered as a result,'' according to the suit. “Not everyone has borne the sacrifice willingly.''

Along with Barfly Inc., the operators of the Tinhorn, the other defendants in the suit are restaurant CEO Baret Lepejian; his son, Lucas Lepejian; his daughter, Talya Lepejian; and property owner Isabelle Lepejian, whose relationship to the others is not stated in the complaint.

Photo: Getty Images

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