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Burbank Files A Lawsuit To Shut Down Tinhorn Flats

A side angle of the exterior of Tinhorn Flats saloon with wooden swinging doors and a tin roof awning
The exterior of Tinhorn Flats in Burbank.
(Elina Shatkin/LAist)
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Burbank has had it with Tinhorn Flats, the Old West-themed bar and restaurant that keeps defying pandemic safety protocols.

On Monday, city officials filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court asking a judge to let them cut off the restaurant's electricity and padlock its doors so they can enforce its closure order, which was instituted to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Located at the corner of Magnolia Boulevard and Naomi Street, Tinhorn Flats' owners have previously railed against face mask mandates (although they eventually agreed to enforce them) and vowed to defy the ban on in-person dining at restaurants.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has already revoked the saloon's health permit. Last week, the Burbank City Council revoked its conditional-use permit after a contentious meeting. At that Monday night meeting, a Burbank city official showed photos allegedly taken in mid-December of diners being served indoors at Tinhorn Flatswhile in-person dining was banned at L.A. County restaurants due to increasing COVID-19 cases.

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After last Monday's city council meeting, Tinhorn Flats opened on Tuesday, at high noon. The city of Burbank now wants to declare the restaurant an ongoing public nuisance.

"Defendants' continued operations without a public health permit and CUP [Conditional Use Permit], especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic," the lawsuit states, "demonstrates defendants' flagrant flouting of the code, regulations, rules and standards required for health and safety practices in businesses such as restaurants."