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Tinhorn Flats Gets Evicted From Its Burbank Digs

Tinhorn Flats exterior with a chainlink fence around it
The exterior of Tinhorn Flats, with a chainlink fence around it, in Burbank.
(A Martinez/LAist)
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It's unhappy trails for Burbank's notorious Old West-themed saloon. On a day when most restaurants and bars in Los Angeles County are reopening without pandemic restrictions, Tinhorn Flats looks like it may be shutting down for good.

During the pandemic, the business has repeatedly defied health and safety orders. Tinhorn Flats continued to offer on-site dining this past winter when COVID-19 cases were skyrocketing, leading to a series of standoffs between the proprietors and local officials.

The city of Burbank has sued Tinhorn Flats, shut off its electricity, padlocked its doors, nailed plywood across its front entrance and surrounded the building with a chainlink fence. L.A. County officials have cited the joint, fined it and revoked its health permit.

(We have a timeline of the Tinhorn Flats saga here.)

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Still, owner Baret Lepejian and his son Lucas, who runs the place, have remained defiant. Lucas has been arrested three times for violating directives to keep Tinhorn Flats closed.

Baret Lepejian, who has been living in Thailand since 2019, according to Outlook, recently told the New Yorker, "They’re trying to take my business away. Honestly, if the rules came straight from God, I wouldn't do it." Not everyone in the Lepejian family agrees with this stance — including Isabelle Lepejian, who is Baret's ex-wife and Lucas's mother.

In a press release issued this morning, the city of Burbank announced, "The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department today turned over possession of the Tinhorn Flats' property and building, which sits at the corner of Magnolia Blvd. and Naomi St., to the property owner, Isabelle Lepejian. It's the final step in the eviction process she initiated against Tinhorn Flats."

Isabelle Lepejian was granted a writ of possession, allowing her to enter and occupy the property.

The eviction is a separate legal action from the recent temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction issued by the Los Angeles County Superior Court in the City’s civil suit against Tinhorn Flats for continuing to operate after revocation of its public health permit and Conditional Use Permit.