Family sues bar after corn dog contest allegedly leads to woman’s death


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico woman has filed a lawsuit against an Albuquerque bar. She claims the bar overserved her mom during a night out, before she choked to death during a corn dog eating contest.

It happened at a bar called Fire and Ice, which was once located near Montgomery and Eubank. The bar has since closed.

It was January 26th when 56-year-old Debra Harbeck and her adult daughter were out at Fire and Ice, celebrating the daughter’s birthday. According to a lawsuit filed in Santa Fe in the past week, Harbeck had been drinking heavily, before entering a corn dog eating contest.

The lawsuit alleges Harbeck had been overserved by bar staff earlier in the evening and claims Harbeck had been served 14 drinks before the contest.

Harbeck and other female competitors got on their knees, in front of men, who were holding the corn dogs between their legs. Harbeck choked during the speed-eating contest and died a few days later from serious problems caused by the choking episode.

The lawsuit aims to hold the bar’s owners and others connected to its liquor license and the property responsible for employees allegedly over-serving Harbeck and for holding an eating contest with alleged choking hazards without medical supervision.

The lawsuit also alleges due to Harbeck’s level of intoxication, she never should have been allowed to even enter the contest. She had about a .13 blood alcohol level.

KRQE News 13 tried to track down the owners of the now closed bar but couldn’t reach them.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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