ARIZONA NEWS

Settlement reached between Phoenix bar, man with service dog turned away

Mar 1, 2020, 4:15 AM | Updated: 5:13 pm
(Photo by Leigh Vogel/Getty Images for A+E)...
(Photo by Leigh Vogel/Getty Images for A+E)
(Photo by Leigh Vogel/Getty Images for A+E)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Attorney General’s Office has settled a civil complaint against a Phoenix bar that allegedly turned away a man because of his service dog, Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced in a press release Friday.

In January 2018, O’Brien’s Sports Bar employees allegedly told Bill Larson he could not bring in his service dog, an American Bulldog named Whopper.

Larson, an Air Force Reserve veteran, suffers from transient ischemic attacks, also called ministrokes. The dog is trained to detect an upcoming attack and alert Larson to prepare for it and ensure the safety of him and those around him.

The Arizona Attorney General’s Office filed a lawsuit against O’Brien’s on Oct. 15, 2019.

On Friday, the two sides reached a settlement.

O’Brien’s agreed to pay $7,500 to Larson and $2,500 in civil penalty to Arizona.

The bar also agreed to implement policies to prohibit discrimination based on disability, train employees to understand the Arizonans with Disabilities Act, and post a sign stating service animals are welcome.

“Our Civil Rights Division is fighting to make sure Arizonans are treated fairly and not discriminated against,” Brnovich said in the press release. “We encourage all Arizona business operators and service animal owners to learn more about their responsibilities and their rights under the American and Arizona Disabilities Acts.”

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Settlement reached between Phoenix bar, man with service dog turned away