The city of Burbank Wednesday red-tagged and padlocked the Tinhorn Flats Saloon & Grill, which is already the subject of a temporary restraining order issued by a judge for operating without a conditional use permit and a health permit, but the owner’s son responded by busting open the door.

The latest development at the West Magnolia Boulevard business means the building has been identified as unsafe and may not be used or occupied, according to city officials.

The restaurant owner has been served with administrative citations totaling $2,500 for violating the city’s zoning codes because the eatery’s CUP was revoked by the City Council. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health also earlier took away the eatery’s health permit.

As recently as Friday, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mitchell L. Beckloff held off issuing a preliminary injunction to give the city and the business a chance to work out their differences pending another hearing on April 9. A TRO he issued March 8 remains in effect that allows the city to enforce its closure order that stems from the restaurant’s repeated defiant offering of outdoor dining during a time it was banned in Los Angeles County as a way of limiting the spread of the coronavirus.

On March 29, the city formed a task force to inspect Tinhorn Flats for possible safety violations for continuing to operate even though the judge authorized disconnecting electricity to the building under the TRO.

“There are multiple fire/life safety violations that have been brought to the business owner’s attention,” Burbank Fire Chief Eric Garcia said. “These violations may create life safety hazards to any occupants in the structure.”

Running cords from a generator to an electrical panel and using the electrical breakers as switches is a fire hazard that is made even more dangerous by non-working exit lights, according to Garcia.

The owner’s son broke open the padlocked door to the business to the cheers of a small group of supporters, some of whom yelled “Freedom!”

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