Business owners urged to learn from restaurant shooting

Expert: Private property rules trump concealed-carry laws

SAN ANTONIO – The brief cellphone video of a waiter allegedly firing in the air inside an iconic steakhouse has gun safety expert Chuck Bradley urging business owners to research the state’s new concealed-carry laws.

Bradley, a concealed-carry instructor at Bracken Guns, said that’s why classes like his are in high demand.

“Even if you don’t want a license to carry, you learn the laws. You learn what your options are as a business owner,” Bradley said.

Bradley said it’s important for them to know private property rules trump concealed-carry laws.

Owners of the iconic Little Red Barn Steakhouse on South Hackberry said the written policy they have employees sign doesn’t allow weapons on the premises, even if employees are licensed to carry.

San Antonio Police said the waiter was cooperative and has turned over the gun he fired in the air after a customer allegedly had him in a headlock.

“If that’s in their company policy, in their employee manual, basically, that’s criminal trespassing by the employee, so that’s a no-go,” Bradley said.

An SAPD spokesman said the employee may face a preliminary charge of unlawful carry, but neither the waiter nor the customer have been charged pending the outcome of the investigation.

Bradley said, legally, “We can only use deadly force if we’re in fear of our life. We think that serious bodily injury is imminent.”

As for the gunshots that didn’t hit anyone, Bradley said, “That’s deadly force. You just missed them. There’s no such thing as a warning shot."

Restaurant owner Marissa Hernandez Garcia and her sister, Nancy Hernandez, said nothing like this had ever happened before, and they don’t want it to overshadow their restaurant’s cherished 53-year history.

They said they’re grateful that no one was hurt. They said they want to learn from the experience and other business owners should do the same.