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TABC investigating Port Arthur restaurant in connection with crash that killed BPD officer

Texas State Troopers believe Luis Torres, 18, of Port Arthur was drunk when he crashed into the police cruiser around 2:30 a.m. Sunday.

BEAUMONT, Texas — The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has launched a preliminary investigation into Tequila's Mexican Bar and Grill on Memorial Boulevard in connection to the head-on crash that killed Beaumont Police Officer Sheena Yarbrough-Powell and injured her partner, officer Gabriel Fells.

The agency’s spokesperson, Chris Porter, confirmed the probe to 12News anchor Jordan Williams. Porter says, initially, agents will focus on a “source investigation” – essentially asking “were minors served improperly or were intoxicated persons being served?”

Texas State Troopers believe Luis Torres, 18, of Port Arthur was drunk when he crashed into the police cruiser around 2:30 a.m. Sunday morning along Cardinal Drive. 

According to a probable cause affidavit, his blood alcohol content was 296 mg/DL the morning of the crash. That's more than 3 times the legal limit. 

The affidavit says his 'activities' before the crash were found on 'media platforms.'

"Additional information about Torres' activities leading to this event were found on several different media platforms, Torres own admission to consuming alcohol, and witnesses testimony all illustrate a night of heavy drinking," investigators said in the affidavit. 

RELATED: Charges filed against 18-year-old driver in deadly crash involving Beaumont Police officer

RELATED: Beaumont Police officer killed, another officer injured in head-on collision on Highway 69 early Sunday morning

Tequila’s is the sole focus of the TABC investigation at this point, according to spokesperson Chris Porter. The state will see whether the establishment had any civil “administrative violations” in connection to Torres. 

If any violations are alleged, the state could fine Tequila’s or take away its liquor license. Any employee involved could potentially face misdemeanor criminal charges, Porter said. 

As of Tuesday, Torres remained in a Beaumont hospital recovering, according to Beaumont Police Chief Jim Singletary. 

RELATED: Services set for Beaumont officer killed early Sunday in head-on wreck with wrong-way driver

Credit: Eric Williams

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