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Woman with small dog has big beer-tossing, table-slamming outburst at East Boston pub

A regular at Renegade's, 1004 Bennington St. in East Boston, exploded in uncontrollable rage one July evening when the restaurant's co-owner and manager blocked her from leaving to drive away with her tiny dog because she appeared under the influence and they didn't want her to get behind the wheel.

Before four officers finally managed to carry the 50-something woman into a holding cell across the harbor at BPD District A-1, she had tried to strangle both the co-owner and the manager, thrown a 12-ounce can of cream ale at other restaurant patrons, slammed two tables, forcing beer to slosh everywhere, and showered Black, Puerto Rican and White police officers with loud streams of racist expletives, police and the restaurant attorney told the Boston Licensing Board this morning. Her dog wound up at A-7 in East Boston awaiting pickup by a city animal-control officer for a trip to the city pound in Roslindale.

According to police and Renegade's attorney, the woman was a regular at the place, and had never caused any problems before. Around 3 p.m. on July 9, she came in, with her little dog and, over the course of three hours, consumed three cocktails and ate a meal at the bar, bar attorney Kristen Scanlon said.

At 5:56, Scanlon continued, she paid her tab. The co-owner, who knew she didn't live in East Boston and always drove to the pub, noticed she wasn't steady on her feet and called over the evening manager, who had just arrived for his shift, to discuss trying to convince her to give up her keys and instead get in an Uber.

At 5:59, Scanlon said, they tried that. The woman refused.

At 6:01, she returned to the bar.

At 6:02, she tried to leave again - as the co-owner, anticipating possible trouble, called 911 Scanlon said.

This time, the bouncer stood in the doorway to block her. He again asked for her keys and offered to call an Uber. "She grabbed him by the throat," BPD Ofr. James Sullivan-Venezia, one of numerous BPD officers who had to deal with her, told the board. The co-owner tried to get her off him. The woman responded by trying to strangle her. Other customers - there were only three others there, it was a slow evening - rushed over to try to separate the woman from the restaurant workers, Scanlon said.

Eventually, the co-owner managed to grab the woman's wrists and held her like that until police arrived soon after.

A cop took control of her wrists from the co-owner and tried to calm the woman down - and said he would release her wrists, but cautioned he would restain her if she acted up again, Sullivan-Venezia. She agreed and he let go - and then she promptly raised her arms as if to go back into battle mode. The officer cuffed her.

He and another officer began to bring her out to their cruiser. She went limp, forcing them to carry her. One officer opened the cruiser's rear door and as they began to get her in, she resisted, kicking the door and then wedging her foot out to keep them from closing her in, he said.

They eventually got the door shut in and drove her to the women's holding cell at A-1 - as she kept kicking the barred window separating her from them and the cruiser's rear window - and screaming racial epithets and threats against them. Somehow, she managed to get her arms, which had been cuffed behind her, in front of her. Sullivan-Venezia said.

Her verbal and physical outburst continued at booking, where the Black officers who had brought her in were replaced by Hispanic and White officers, for whom she found more insults to hurl as she tried, unsuccessfully, to kick in the plexiglass window that separated her from them. Booking finished, four officers had to carry her to the holding cell, Sullivan-Venezia said.

Meanwhile, back at Renegade's, officers had secured both her small dog, which caused no problems, as well as her gold watch and her purse, containing a large amount of cash, which an officer had to ferry over to A-1 to be put in storage with her other belongings.

Scanlon said the incident was totally out of the restaurant's control, that Renegades' has had no problems in the past in general, and that the woman's past behavior at a restaurant she had frequented had given no indication of her potentially seething rage.

The board decides Thursday whether it agrees or whether the incident could have been foreseeable and, if so, something that might warrant a sanction, based on a police citation for assault and battery, patron on employee, and assault and battery, patron on patron.

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Comments

Any restaurant that prevents someone drunk from driving should be given an honorary award. It's the right thing to do, legally and morally.

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Before four officers finally managed to carry the 50-something woman into a holding cell across the harbor at BPD District A-1, she had tried to strangle both the co-owner and the manager, thrown a 12-ounce can of cream ale at other restaurant patrons, slammed two tables, forcing beer to slosh everywhere, and showered Black, Puerto Rican and White police officers with loud streams of racist expletives,

She doesn't sound drunk at all!

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They didn't get dinged for having the "little dog" in the restaurant to begin with?

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She probably claimed that the dog was an emotional support animal. My understanding is that it is an ADA and/or HIPAA violation for an establishment to require proof of such a thing, which is why we all see “little dogs” in grocery stores, coffee shops, restaurants, and bars everywhere.

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Emotional support animals do not count as service animals and are therefore not exempted under ADA, although people rarely get called out on it. Here's a fun/interesting article about it:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/10/20/pets-allowed

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Under the ADA, any dog can be an assistance animal.

The only legally allowed questions about a dog are whether it's an assistance animal, and what task it has been trained to perform. The answers can be things like "helps me find my way around" and "alerts me to seizures so I can sit down in time"--not just "I'm happier when I have the dog near me." Emotional support animals are mostly a housing thing.

HIPAA isn't relevant here, because they're not supposed to ask "what's your diagnosis?" or follow up with "oh, does that mean you're blind?"

As you say, they can't ask for proof, and there is no federal, state, or private organization in charge of certifying assistance animals.

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A service animal is trained to do specific tasks. You are allowed to ask what specific tasks a service animal is trained to perform. An emotional support dog is *not* the same as a service animal according to the ADA.

https://northeastada.org/resources?q=Service%20animal&categories=&keywor...

And HIPPA does not apply to bartenders or bouncers or anyone asking you to wear a mask. It only applies to your health care providers.

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Guess they were preoccupied with all the beer hurling, choking, screaming, window kicking, table slamming, racism, etc.

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The dog knew how to behave in grownup places.

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27

Oh, I'm so embarrassed. This is why I can never bring her anywhere.

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35

checks out.

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sad the dog had to go to the pokie becuz of the owners mess.
watch the company yoo keep.

Given that she was a regular and this seems to have been out of character for her, plus the strength and aggressiveness of her fighting, I'd wonder if she'd had some drugs in addition to her usual cocktails.

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Few drugs elicit aggression like alcohol.

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intensify the effects of alcohol. Drunker faster with far less consumption.

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If she supposedly had 3 drinks (let's say it was really 6), her reaction does seem really over-the-top for someone who is a regular.

Did that used to be The Victory?

Changed over about four or five years ago. I miss eating pizza at the Victory while our mail carrier took a break for a pint.

Yes, same location as Victory Pub was.

putting pressure on bars in the neighborhoods so they sell out their license to Downtown and the Seaport for years

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Absolutely despicable centrist Democrat trash, the lot of them.

Or Massachusetts. Stop polluting the comment section with your personal vendetta.

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Anon trash.

I retain the standing to defend my friends who still live and work there. It's called "giving a (expletive) about other people." You know, one of the fundamentals of a good community.

"You don't live here" makes you look like an embarrassing Boston parody.

...does being a "centrist Democrat" have to do with this?

Who seek dominion over others, and thrive on abuse.

Will, I'm no fan of centrists, but this is simply loony.

Why isn't she named?

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why arent yoo named, anon ?

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Sometimes, I just hate humans.

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How many times has she tried to strangle Rover?

How much did the dog have?

if she's up to date on her rabies shots.

I'm sure the doggie is just fine.