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ABC shuts down Jacksonville bar after reports of numerous safety violations

After multiple shootings and complaints from patrons, the ABC commission decided immediate action was necessary
The inciting statements came from Jacksonville police officers, the Jacksonville director of...
The inciting statements came from Jacksonville police officers, the Jacksonville director of public safety and a victim of a shooting in November.(WITN)
Published: Dec. 5, 2020 at 4:31 PM EST
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JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - The North Carolina Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission has suspended permits for a bar in Jacksonville after assessing a list of reported acts of various safety violations.

The ABC license for Champs Lounge, at 93 Western Blvd, Jacksonville, was suspended on December 5.

The inciting statements came from Jacksonville police officers, the Jacksonville director of public safety and a victim of a shooting in November.

The list of violations claims security at the bar was not sufficient, allowing for multiple shootings, assaults and drug and alcohol violations to take place.

In addition, it alleges the bar has not abided by state executive orders on social distancing and permitted hours for alcohol sale to prevent spread of COVID-19.

The order describes in detail the events of two shootings, in January and November 2020, and safety violations that it says failed to prevent those shootings. The order also includes a sworn statement from Jacksonville resident Destini Johnson, who was shot in the leg in the November shooting.

The report indicates that Jacksonville Police Department has responded to over 50 calls to the bar in the last 3 years.

Champs Lounge has been licensed by the ABC since January 2016. It reopened in November after shutting down in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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