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A popular Seaside Heights bar has been fined $15,000 for serving a visibly intoxicated member of the "Jersey Shore" cast in June, authorities said.
The New Jersey Attorney General's office released a statement saying that Spicy Cantina & Mexican Grill also agreed to ban Deena Cortese from the bar for two years following the June 10 incident.
Spicy also faces a 10-day suspension of its license should thee restaraunt violate the Attorney General's Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) laws over the next two years.
Officials say the 25-year-old Cortese was spotted running out of Spicy and into the street at the corner of Ocean Terrace and Sumner Avenue, where she began dancing in the intersection and lost her balance several times.
Cortese then proceeded south on Ocean Terrace and grabbed onto the trunk of a car and continued to dance, authorities said. Seaside Heights Police said her behavior was seriously restricting the flow of the traffic and arrested her on a disorderly conduct charge. Cortese later told police she'd been drinking throughout the day.
Statements taken by ABC investigators reveal that Cortese and an entourage that included an MTV film crew were at Spicy for about 90 minutes that day. During that time, Cortese was seen walking on the bar, falling on the ground and standing on a red bench at a table of random guests.
At one point, Cortese left the premises with an alcoholic beverage, walked onto the boardwalk and returned to the bar a short time later, authorities said.
“ABC licensees are strictly liable for any violations of the law at their premises and have a responsibility to maintain control of their establishment. In this case, the management at Spicy Cantina and Mexican Grill were not in control,” Halfacre said.
In addition to pleading to the intoxication charges, Spicy also admitted to serving Cortese drinks that she did not order, which is illegal. Four staff members from Spicy submitted a letter to the ABC dated June 10 explaining that Cortese was served one alcoholic drink, a vodka and club soda, then was deemed to be intoxicated by the bar management.
According to the letter, after cutting Cortese off, "she was served several shots of water, which she thought contained alcohol. She was also served non-alcoholic drink mix with fruit garnish. She drank multiple glasses without realizing that she was not drinking alcohol."