Restaurant denies serving man 17 shots before deadly I-485 crash

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A Charlotte restaurant denies letting a man drink 17 shots before a deadly crash in September.

Police said 48-year-old Robert Kite died after driving off the I-485 flyover after drinking at Wild Wing Cafe in Steele Creek.

A notice from the ABC Commission said restaurant employees failed to monitor his consumption.

The restaurant said in a statement that the drinks were consumed by the group and were simply on one bill.

Wild Wing Cafe is accused of serving a man 17 shots of liquor in four hours before the man crashed his vehicle on the Interstate 485 flyover bridge and plunged 70 feet below onto Interstate 77.

[Troopers ID driver killed after SUV plunges off I-485 flyover bridge]

Investigators said Kite was speeding when his SUV slammed into the concrete wall in September 2017 and launched over the bridge.

The father of six died instantly.

Channel 9 learned from investigators that, just hours before that horrific crash, Kite was at the Wild Wing Café on Ayrsley Town Boulevard.

Investigators said the restaurant violated state law by serving him a total of 17 shots of liquor within a four-hour period.

"It's against the law in North Carolina to knowingly sell to an intoxicated patron," said Michael Crowley, chief of Mecklenburg County Alcoholic Beverage Control Board.

State officials said Wild Wing Cafe has signed a settlement agreement that states the restaurant will lose its liquor license for 10 days or pay a $1,000 fine.

[READ: Wild Wing Cafe Violation letter]

Crowley said he's investigating more restaurants and bars accused of over-serving customers. There have been seven cases in the past year and a half.

"There's a lot more in Charlotte. It's growing. There's a lot more establishments," Crowley said.

Channel 9 investigated and learned the same Wild Wing Cafe was in trouble in 2004 after a 17-year-old was able to purchase alcohol and then died in a crash.

Channel 9 stopped by the restaurant on Tuesday but management wouldn't comment.

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