Family of father killed in crash files $4.5 million lawsuit against King’s Inn

Oct 1, 2019

The family of a Dartmouth man killed in a 2018 crash has filed a $4.5 million wrongful death lawsuit against the King’s Inn. 

According to court documents, the civil lawsuit filed in Bristol County Superior Court names Dartmouth Clubs, Inc., doing business as King’s Inn, and an unidentified King’s Inn supervisor as defendants. 

The lawsuit was filed by the family of David dosSantos, 39, who was killed when his car was allegedly struck by Justin Castro early in the morning on November 13, 2018 at the intersection of Route 140 and Kempton Street in New Bedford. 

"David's death was a tragedy that should never have happened,” said attorney Michael Franco, who is representing the family. "The lawsuit has been brought to bring justice to David's family and to make the King’s Inn aware of its important responsibility to protect innocent people on the road from its customers who drink and drive."

According to a Massachusetts State Police investigative report filed in Castro’s criminal case, Castro was behind the wheel of a red 2011 Chevrolet Cruz when he allegedly drove through a red light at the intersection of Route 140 and Kempton Street and struck a 1999 Toyota Corolla driven by dosSantos at 1:23 a.m. 

DosSantos was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. State police investigators allege Castro was traveling at 63 MPH in a posted 35 MPH zone, and had a blood alcohol concentration of at least .223 at the time of the crash, which is nearly three times the legal limit. 

Castro faces charges of manslaughter while operating under the influence, and motor vehicle homicide while operating under the influence. Those charges are pending in criminal court. 

In the civil lawsuit filed against the King’s Inn, dosSantos’ family alleges both the supervisor and the King’s Inn were “negligent, grossly negligent, and/or reckless” in serving Castro alcohol prior to the crash. 

According to the state police report, Castro had been drinking at Ryan’s Sports Pub and Billiards in New Bedford before driving to the King’s Inn at 11:23 p.m. on November 12. 

DosSantos’ family alleges the King’s Inn and the unnamed supervisor served Castro alcoholic beverages despite knowing Castro was highly intoxicated, and had allowed Castro to get behind the wheel shortly before 1:23 a.m. despite knowing he was intoxicated. 

In the two hours and 45 minutes leading up to the crash, Castro was observed on video surveillance consuming at least six beers, according to the state police report. 

Franco said they will be seeking to identify the servers, bartenders, and managers working at the time Castro was at the King’s Inn. 

DosSantos was the father of two young children. The family is seeking $4.5 million in damages including lost income, service, protection, and care. 

Luana DiSarra Scavone, an attorney representing the King’s Inn, did not return a call for comment on the lawsuit. King’s Inn owner Craig Cabral could not be reached for comment.