Booze News: Distilled in Room 215

A blog about the Baltimore City Liquor Board

What happened at the Liquor Board on November 5, 2015.

Written by Becky Witt

Hearings began on November 5, 2015 at 1:11pm; Chairman Neil, Commissioner Hafey and Commissioner Trotter were all present.

I. Expedited Items (Transfers):

Applicant Giatri Singh
Business Name LAL Jee, Inc.
Trading As Trade name pending
Address 2696 Wilkens Avenue
Type of License Class “B” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

Mr. Abraham Hurdle represented the applicant. He proffered to the commissioners that the current owner of the business is moving to Florida to retire. His client has worked with her husband at a different liquor licensed location, but she is not yet alcohol management certified. She plans to do some minor alterations, including a slight change to the location of the bar.

Hurdle said that, when he checked the Community Association Directory, no organizations showed up to cover this address. No community leaders contacted his client, but, if any do, his client will meet with them.

Zoning R-8
Neighborhood Millhill
Area demographics 83% Black, 13% White; 31% households have children under age 18; median household income: $19,183; 38% households live below the poverty line
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 100%
Attorney for licensee Mr. Abraham Hurdle
# in support 1
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

Licensees’ attorneys often proffer that they cannot find a community association or that there is none for a particular address. In Baltimore City, there are few areas that are not covered by any community association. Cityview, at cityview.baltimore.gov, shows five possible community associations that could cover this property: Gwynns Falls Trail Council, Mill Hill Area Council, Inc., Operation Reachout-Southwest-(OROSW), Southwestern District Police-Community Relations Council, and Communities Organized To Improve Life-(COIL).

Applicant Lisa Markiewicz
Business Name West Madison, LLC
Trading As West Madison Ale House and Wine Bar
Address 307-11 W. Madison Street
Type of License Class “BD-7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

Mr. Peter Prevas represented the applicant, Ms. Markiewicz, who has owned the property since 1996. She sold the business recently but continued to be the landlord. The person to whom she sold the business, a Mr. Singh, has gone out of business, and she is taking back the reins from him to active operate it again. She is a current licensee and is asking to remove Singh from the license.

Zoning B-4-1
Neighborhood Mount Vernon
Area demographics 53% White, 32% Black, 8% Asian, 3% 2 or more races; 4% Hispanic ethnicity; 6% households have children under age 18; Median Household Income: $38,331; 5.5 % households live below poverty line
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? No.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee Mr. Peter Prevas
# in support 1
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

The applicant/licensee asserts in her application, under penalty of perjury, that she is a Baltimore City resident and registered voter. However, her home address is in Baltimore County, not Baltimore City. Without a Baltimore City resident, this application is legally insufficient.

Applicants Justin Hostetter & Omar Black
Business Name NBH Enterprises, LLC
Trading As Cardinal Tavern
Address 901 S. Clinton Street
Type of License Class “BD-7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership, request for outdoor table service
Hearing notes

Former Liquor Board Chairman Stephan Fogleman represented the two applicants. Executive Secretary Michelle Bailey-Hedgepeth noted, for the record, that the agency had received a letter of support for the application from Mr. Dan Tracy, Vice President of the Canton Community Association. Fogleman explained that Mr. Black has been on the license for years, and Mr. Hostetter is coming on to the license as an investor. The attorney proffered that the establishment serves good food, and both licensees will be alcohol management certified. Mr. Hostetter has moved to Baltimore City and lives within a couple blocks of the business. He submitted a copy of the outdoor seating guidelines approved by the BMZA and to which his clients had agreed to be bound.

Zoning R-8
Neighborhood Canton
Area demographics 86% White, 4% Black, 3% Asian; 5% Hispanic ethnicity; 9% households have children under age 18; median household income: $82,130
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee Former BLLC Chairman Stephan Fogleman
# in support 2
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

The Baltimore City resident applicant has no pecuniary interest in the business; therefore, this application may not be sufficient under Article 2B. In the section of the application that asks applicants to list all authorized persons of the LLC, only Mr. Hostetter is listed.

Applicant Ryan Perlberg
Business Name R.Y.E., LLC
Trading As Rye
Address 1639 Thames Street
Type of License Class “BD-7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership, request for live entertainment
Hearing notes

Former Liquor Board Chairman Stephan Fogleman represented Mr. Perlberg. Fogleman proffered that his client is currently on the liquor license at a different establishment, at 811 S. Broadway. Mr. Perlberg will take steps to remove himself from that license prior to the issuance of this license. He is experienced in the hospitality industry. Fogleman also noted that the night before, the Fells Point Residents’ Association had voted to support the transfer of ownership. They will have live entertainment at this location, the former Leadbetters.

Executive Secretary Michelle Bailey-Hedgepeth noted that the previous transfer for this location, approved in March 2015, had fallen through. The bar has been in consistent operation under its current owner.

Zoning B-3-2
Neighborhood Fells Point
Area demographics 53% White, 32% Black, 8% Asian, 3% 2 or more races; 4% Hispanic ethnicity; 6% households have children under age 18; Median Household Income: $38,331; 5.5 % households live below poverty line.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 100%
Attorney for licensee Former Chairman Stephan Fogleman
# in support 1
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

Article 2B section 10-103(b)(12) says that each application must contain a “statement that the applicant … is not pecuniarily intersted in any other place of business in said county or City of Baltimore where or for which a license has been applied for, granted or issued under” Article 2B. Mr. Perlberg is currently a licensee on another license, according to his testimony. In Baltimore City, an individual is only allowed to be on one license at a time. There is one exception in Article 2B to this general rule: licensees can be on up to six Class B restaurant licenses at a time within the city limits. Because Mr. Perlberg is a current licensee at another establishment, his application for this business can not legally be submitted until he has removed himself from his other license.

A letter from the applicant’s attorney, Mr. Fogleman, included in the docket materials, points out that other attorneys in the past, specifically naming Mr. Kodenski as an example, have had their clients submit their applications for a license while they are still listed on other licenses as licensees. The letter does not address or cite any provision of Article 2B that would allow for this and does not mention Article 2B section 10-103(b)(12).

Applicants Lydia Fitzsimmons, Mary Kaimakis & Vassos Yiannoris
Business Name EMF, Inc.
Trading As Cypriana
Address 116 W. University Parkway
Type of License Class “B” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership, request for live entertainment & outdoor table service
Hearing notes

Former Liquor Board Chairman Stephan Fogleman represented the applicants for the transfer of ownership; there were no opponents present, but Executive Secretary Michelle Bailey-Hedgepeth noted that the agency had received a conditional letter of support from the Tuscany-Canterbury Neighborhood Association. Fogleman proffered that Mr. Yiannoris has a longstanding history in Baltimore. For 25 years, he has run the restaurant Cypriana on East Baltimore Street. The former business at this location, La Famiglia, was a family restaurant, with no violations or “deleterious history.” Fogleman showed the board members that the file does show one protest of renewal in 1981, at which time the former licensees agreed that the dining room would stay open when the bar was open.

The applicants had discussed the transfer with the neighbors of Tuscany-Canterbury, and the community members had expressed some concerns about potential noise and underage drinking. The applicants are very receptive to concerns about noise, and they want to be responsive to those concerns. They agreed to terminate outdoor live entertainment, generally, by 9:00pm Sunday through Thursday and 11:00pm Friday and Saturday.

Fogleman noted that his clients did not agree to any restrictions on the carryout privilege of the Class B license. They want to be able to sell alcohol to go. The neighbors would prefer that the business not sell for carryout, because they had concerns about the college students nearby and underage drinking. Fogleman assured the commissioners that his clients will run a “grown-up” establishment, like the Ambassador nearby. Fogleman said that he had discussed with his clients that this Board takes allegations of underage drinking very seriously and had pointed out that “Commissioner Trotter lives close by.” He concluded by saying that his clients do not agree to limit carryout provisions, but they do agree to the rest of the suggested restrictions in the community association’s letter. His clients also want to be able to deliver, especially to the residents in the apartment building where the restaurant will be located.

Commissioner Hafey noted that there were a few discrepancies in the application submitted: there was no answer in the section about off-premises catering, and, for live entertainment, the applicants checked both yes and no. Chairman Neil said that the license will not be issued until the discrepancies are resolved, either as a separate letter of explanation or corrections on the original application, initialed and dated.

Zoning R-10
Neighborhood Tuscany-Canterbury
Area demographics 12% Black, 75% White; 7% Asian; 3% Hispanic; 2% Two or more races; 23% households have children under age 18; median household income: $80,903.82
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee Former Chairman Stephan Fogleman
# in support 3
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

Completeness of the application: Under the 2014 legislative reform bill, each application must be completed before it is scheduled for a hearing; Commissioner Hafey found discrepancies and unfinished sections in the application.

Timeliness: La Famiglia restaurant closed on April 6, 2015, according to their website. It was not clear from the materials posted on the website when the transfer application was submitted, but 180 days from April 6 is October 3, 2015. The application to transfer ownership was notarized on October 2; if it was also submitted that same day, the application would have been submitted on the 179th day after the closing and would have been timely.

Pecuniary Interest: The Baltimore City resident named on this application has no pecuniary interest in the business, which may be in violation of state law.

Applicants Vijaykumar Patel & John Upperman
Business Name Shakti Hanover, LLC
Trading As Hanover Liquors
Address 1701 S. Hanover Street
Type of License Class “A” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

Executive Secretary Michelle Bailey-Hedgepeth noted for the record that the file contained a letter of support and signed MOU with the community association in the area.

Mr. Jay Yoo represented the two applicants. He proffered to the commissioner that Mr. Patel has 5.5 years of alcohol management experience, but in other states: Virginia and Georgia. He is alcohol management certified in Maryland and has no criminal history. Mr. Upperman has been a licensee at this address and will continue to be the resident agent and a licensee. He has lived in the neighborhood for twenty years. Mr. Patel, the new licensee, will be the day-to-day operator.

Commissioner Trotter said to the applicants that this neighborhood contains a lot of underage people, who may try to get in and buy alcohol. Trotter noted, “we don’t like that. We don’t like underage drinking.”

Zoning R-8
Neighborhood South Baltimore
Area demographics 90% White, 3% Black, 3% Asian; 3% Hispanic ethnicity; 15% households have children under age 18; median household income: $73,342; 8% households live below the poverty line.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 1%
Attorney for licensee Mr. Jay Yoo
# in support 2
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed None
Applicants Maria Alvarado & Edward Calvello
Business Name Los Amigos Bar & Restaurant, Inc.
Trading As Los Amigos
Address 5506 Harford Road
Type of License Class “B” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

No one appeared for this hearing.

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Hamilton Hills
Area demographics 37% White, 55% Black, 1% Asian; 2% Hispanic ethnicity; 33% households have children under age 18; 5% households below poverty line; median household income: $57,951.01
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee N/A
# in support N/A
Attorney for community N/A
# of protestants N/A
# of inspectors/police officers N/A
Result of hearing N/A
Vote tally N/A
Portions of state law cited in decision N/A
Other reasons given for decision N/A
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed N/A
Applicants Nancy Mola & Richard Diehl
Business Name Gunther Boiler Works, LLC
Trading As Gunther & Co.
Address 1211 S. Conkling Street
Type of License Class “BD-7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership & location of a Class “BD-7” BWL license presently located at 2320-22 Boston Street to 1211 S. Conkling Street, request for Jive entertainment, outdoor table service & off-premise catering
Hearing notes

The Executive Secretary announced that this hearing would be postponed.

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Canton Industrial Area
Area demographics 86% White, 4% Black, 3% Asian; 5% Hispanic ethnicity; 9% households have children under age 18; median household income: $82,130
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Chevy Chase, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee N/A
# in support N/A
Attorney for community N/A
# of protestants N/A
# of inspectors/police officers N/A
Result of hearing N/A
Vote tally N/A
Portions of state law cited in decision N/A
Other reasons given for decision N/A
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed N/A
Applicants James Ho Park, Jonathan Park & Frederick Chung
Business Name Canton Square Liquor, Inc.
Trading As M & L Canton Discount Liquor
Address 2923-25 O’Donnell Street
Type of License Class “A” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

Mr. Melvin Kodenski represented the three applicants. There was a letter of support for the transfer from the Canton Community Association in the file. Kodenski explained that the application is for a transfer of ownership for an existing establishment. Mr. Frederick Chung has been a licensee at this location for thirty years. The new applicants will spruce up the business, but Mr. Chung will stay on the license, and he owns the property. Mr. Park will run the business, day to day.

Chairman Neil quipped, “you’re being nice today Mr. Kodenski, is your medication working?”

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Canton
Area demographics 86% White, 4% Black, 3% Asian; 5% Hispanic ethnicity; 9% households have children under age 18; median household income: $82,130
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes
Location of entity’s principal office Severn, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 1%
Attorney for licensee Mr. Melvin Kodenski
# in support 3
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed None.
Applicants Tiebe Ghebru, Habtom Woldemariam & Maurice Street
Business Name VEL, Inc.
Trading As Knight’s Liquors
Address 5139-41 Park Heights Avenue
Type of License Class “BD7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

Mr. Melvin Kodenski represented the three applicants. He proffered that they had met with the Pimlico Merchants’ Association and discussed their application to transfer the ownership of an existing license. There was no opposition to the transfer either present at the hearing or in writing in the file.

Commissioner Hafey noted that the application was incomplete. The portion of the application that asked whether the applicants have obtained zoning approval for their business was not completed. Executive Secretary Michelle Bailey-Hedgepeth explained that the zoning approval was in place, because the business is currently operating.

Bailey-Hedgepeth also stated that the current licensee-transferor has been found responsible for three violations in the past year. Commissioner Trotter mused that the police department must have been doing raids in particular areas for underage drinking with their cadets. Kodenski replied that the Korean community felt that they were being targeted by those enforcement checks.

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Central Park Heights
Area demographics 2% White, 96% Black, 0% Asian; 1% Hispanic ethnicity; 38% households have children under age 18; 33% households living below the poverty line; median household income: $27,238.61.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes, but the corporation name is “UEL, Inc.,” not “VEL, Inc.”
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes, but he might not be a city resident and taxpayer, as required by Article 2B. Most applicants use property ownership as a way to show that they are a City taxpayer. However, Mr. Maurice Street does not own the property he lists as his home residence.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee Mr. Melvin Kodenski
# in support 3
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

Completeness of the application: Under the 2014 legislative reform bill, each application must be completed before it is scheduled for a hearing; Commissioner Hafey found discrepancies and unfinished sections in the application.

Applicants Avinash Patel & Charles Zannino
Business Name Sai Beverage, LLC
Trading As Mini Market Deli & Grocery, Beer & Wine
Address 300 S. Highland Avenue
Type of License Class “A” Beer & Wine
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership
Hearing notes

The applicants appeared on their own behalf, unrepresented by counsel. Chairman Benjamin Neil stated that he has known Mr. Charles Zannino for many years, so he recused himself from the hearing.

Mr. Patel testified that he had a liquor store in Prince George’s County for five years, with no violations or problems. Mr. Patel will be running everything in the store. The store is currently open and operating.

Commissioner Hafey asked whether the applicants had met with the community. Mr. Patel said that he hasn’t spoken with anybody from the community, but he doesn’t think anybody has any objections.

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Highlandtown
Area demographics 66% White, 9% Black, 3% Asian; 19% Hispanic ethnicity, 17% households have children under age 18; median household income: $60,484; 15% households live below the poverty line
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Columbia, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 5%
Attorney for licensee None
# in support 2
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally 2-0 (Chairman Neil recused himself)
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed None
Applicant Tsgakrstos Dafla
Business Name 2nd Avenue Liquor, Inc.
Trading As 2nd Avenue Liquor
Address 1376 W. North Avenue
Type of License Class “A” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer ownership & location of a Class “A” BWL license presently located at 2300 Orem Avenue to 1376 W. North Avenue
Hearing notes

Not called.

Zoning B-2-3
Neighborhood Penn North
Area demographics 90% Black, 6% White, 1% Hispanic, 0% Asian, 2% two or more races; 28% households have children under age 18; median household income: $28,502.54; 28% households live below the poverty line.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 100%
Attorney for licensee N/A
# in support N/A
Attorney for community N/A
# of protestants N/A
# of inspectors/police officers N/A
Result of hearing N/A
Vote tally N/A
Portions of state law cited in decision N/A
Other reasons given for decision N/A
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

On the application, in response to the prompt: “address of property on which tax is paid in your name,” Mr. Dafla wrote “1703 W. Lombard Street.” According to SDAT information, this property is not owned by Mr. Dafla.

II. Regular Docket (New Applications and Transfers):

Applicants Barry Lowenthal & Pauline Lowenthal
Business Name Bellerock, LLC
Trading As The Brass Tap
Address 1205 W. Mt. Royal Avenue
Type of License Class “B” Beer & Wine License
Reason for hearing Application for a new Class “B” Beer, Wine & Liquor restaurant license under the provisions of Rule 2.08 requiring $200,000 in capital investment in restaurant fixtures and facilities and seating capacity for a minimum of 75 people
Hearing notes

Mr. Abraham Hurdle represented the two applicants. He submitted the capital investment breakdown and a menu. His clients plan to invest $750,000 in the building and fixtures. There will be 75 seats at tables and 22 additional bar seats, plus outdoor seats. Hurdle stated that he has applied for outdoor table service from the BMZA.

Mr. Steve Johnson, from the Mount Vernon Belvedere Association, testified that his organization is in support of the transfer, as is the Mount Royal Improvement Association, which is adjacent to the property in question.

Mr. Lowenthal has had twenty years’ experience in the restaurant business.

Commissioner Hafey noted that the application did not check a box for the zoning or when asked about off-premises catering. Hurdle proffered that his clients will not engage in off-premises catering.

Though the proposed restaurant will be near the MICA and University of Baltimore campuses, Hurdle said that the menu will not be targeted toward college students. The restaurant will sell “high end stuff.”

Zoning B-5-1
Neighborhood Mid-Town Belvedere
Area demographics 53% White, 32% Black, 8% Asian, 3% 2 or more races; 4% Hispanic ethnicity; 6% households have children under age 18; Median Household Income: $38,331; 5.5% households live below poverty line.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 50%
Attorney for licensee Mr. Abraham Hurdle
# in support 3
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 0
Result of hearing Approved
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed

Completeness of the application: Under the 2014 legislative reform bill, each application must be completed before it is scheduled for a hearing; Commissioner Hafey found discrepancies and unfinished sections in the application.

Applicants Raj Bommakanti & William Ely
Business Name Radharaj, Inc.
Trading As Trade name pending
Address 507 S. Central Avenue
Type of License Class “BD7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing Application to transfer location of a Class “BD7” BWL presently located at 1709 Fleet Street to 507 S. Central Avenue
Hearing notes

The case was postponed.

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Inner Harbor
Area demographics 80% White, 12% Black, 4% Asian. 3% Hispanic ethnicity. 11% households have children under age 18. Median household income: $78,578. 12% households live below poverty line.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Rockville, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? Yes.
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident 0%
Attorney for licensee N/A
# in support N/A
Attorney for community N/A
# of protestants N/A
# of inspectors/police officers N/A
Result of hearing N/A
Vote tally N/A
Portions of state law cited in decision N/A
Other reasons given for decision N/A
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed N/A

III. Violations:

Licensee Frawling Galan
Business Name Euphoria Restaurant and Nightclub, LLC
Trading As Euphoria Restaurant and Nightclub
Address 1301 S. Ponca Street
Type of License Class “BD7” Beer, Wine & Liquor License
Reason for hearing

Violation of Rule 4.18: Illegal Conduct. – September 7, 2015 – At approximately 7:00 pm, every available Baltimore City Police Officer assigned to the Southeastern and Eastern District responded to calls for an aggravated assault and disorderly conduct at the establishment. Upon arriving at the scene Baltimore City Police Officers Mirra, Vlard, Eilerman, and Williams, observed the following separate incidents: a victim that needed to be transported to the hospital for lacerations to the face, a physical altercation by two patrons that seemed to be intoxicated, a man wielding what appeared to be a handgun and then running from police, and an overall disorderly crowd of approximately 800 patrons that were exiting the establishment and into the surrounding neighborhoods at the time that Police arrived.

Violation of Rule 3.12: Public Welfare. September 7, 2015- At approximately 7:00 pm, every available Baltimore City Police Officer assigned to the Southeastern and Eastern District responded to calls for an aggravated assault and disorderly conduct at the establishment. Upon arriving at the scene Baltimore City Police Officers Mirra, Vlard, Eilerman, and Williams, observed the following separate incidents: a victim that needed to be transported to the hospital for lacerations to the face, a physical altercation by two patrons that seemed to be intoxicated, a man wielding what appeared to be a handgun and then running from police, and an overall disorderly crowd of approximately 800 patrons that were exiting the establishment and into the surrounding neighborhoods at the time that Police arrived.

Violation of Rule 4.02: Inebriates and Drug Addicts. September 7, 2015 – At approximately 7:00 pm, every available Baltimore City Police Officer assigned to the Southeastern and Eastern District responded to calls for an aggravated assault and disorderly conduct at the establishment. Upon arriving at the scene Baltimore City Police Officers Mirra, Vlard, Eilerman, and Williams, observed the following separate incidents: a victim, who appeared highly intoxicated, that needed to be transported to the hospital for lacerations to the face and a physical altercation by two patrons that seemed to be intoxicated.

Hearing notes

Baltimore Police Officer James Mira, from the Southeast District, testified that, on Labor Day 2015, he responded to a call at 1301 Ponca Street. There were four calls placed to 911, one of which was for aggravated assault. There were around 800 people at 1301 Ponca Street. Mira said that every available officer in the southeast district responded to the area, including the police helicopter. When Mira arrived, he spoke with a Mr. Carter, who had two lacerations to his head and was bleeding a great deal. There were ten people around him; none of these people, including Mr. Carter, were cooperative with the police. They were intoxicated and disorderly, smelling of alcohol. All they told the police was that they were inside the club, that Mr. Carter was hit, and that nobody saw what happened. While Mira was present, a black male in the crowd threw a black object that looked like a handgun into the crowd. Other officers ran after and arrested him. There were four or five other fights at the club, according to Mira. The officer traveled to the hospital with Mr. Carter. Mira concluded his testimony by saying that the incident at the club drained the police resources from the entire Southeast district; around 40 officers responded to the scene to deal with the fights and clear the area. On cross-examination, Mira clarified that he saw Mr. Carter outside, leaning against the building; however, the testimony from Carter and his friends was that the incident happened inside.

Baltimore City liquor inspector Mark Fosler testified that he was also called down to the scene by Lieutenant Colburn, but he had no testimony about the incident, because most of the people had been cleared from the area by the time he arrived. Fosler saw 19 police cars at the location, plus the helicopter overhead. Fosler spent some time talking to security personnel and officers, but no one had actually seen any fight or incident.

Mr. Kodenski made an argument that all of the charges should be dropped due to insufficient evidence. He said that the incident didn’t disturb anybody in the community, because there was no one present from the community to testify. Kodenski argued that the licensee has nothing to do with the conduct of his patrons once they leave the premises. Kodenski said to the Board, “you make it seem like this is the worst thing since sliced bread!” He said that people don’t take enough personal responsibility for their actions anymore, which is why his client shouldn’t have to be held responsible. The attorney said, in conversation with the commissioners, that the police officers would have to be working anyway, and that the police had overreacted to the situation.

The commissioners agreed to dismiss the Rule 4.02 charge and the Rule 4.18 charge but they found the licensee responsible for violating Rule 3.12.

The licensee has prior violations of Rules 4.02 and 3.12; in 2014, the Board suspended his license for two days and issued a fine of $1,125.

Zoning M-3
Neighborhood Canton Industrial Area
Area demographics 86% White, 4% Black, 3% Asian; 5% Hispanic ethnicity; 9% households have children under age 18; median household income: $82,130
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; no.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? N/A
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident N/A
Attorney for licensee Mr. Melvin Kodenski
# in support 1
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 2
Result of hearing Responsible for one violation of Rule 3.12; Rule 4.02 and Rule 4.18 charges dismissed. $2,500 fine.
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision

Commissioner Hafey said that the Board was given very “loose” testimony on the Rule 4.02 and 4.18 violations, and that the Board doesn’t know what actually occurred inside the building. Commissioner Trotter said, “something happened” because people were lying bleeding next to the building. The business is not being managed property, said Trotter, and “liquor licenses are hard things to manage.” Chairman Neil agreed with Hafey that there is “very very little proof” before the Board, and this Board is “about following the law, following the proof.”

Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed None
Licensee Adam Martinez
Business Name Santa Ana Restaurant, LLC
Trading As Santa Ana Restaurant
Address 246 S. Broadway
Type of License Class “D” Beer & Wine License
Reason for hearing

Violation of Rule 4.05: Prohibited Hours- October 17, 2015- At approximately 1:08am, BLLC Inspectors entered the establishment while conducting a special investigation. Inspectors observed 8-10 patrons in the establishment who possessed and were consuming alcoholic beverages. The license assigned to this establishment allows service only until 1:00 am.

Violation of Rule 3.03(c): Employee Records- October 17,2015- At approximately 1:08 am, BLLC Inspectors entered the establishment while conducting a special investigation.While conducting their investigation, BLLC Inspectors asked for employee records. Staff could not provide inspectors with the employee records upon request.

Violation of Rule 4.18: Illegal Conduct – October 17,2015 – At approximately 1:08am, BLLC Inspectors entered the establishment while conducting a special investigation. Inspectors observed 8-10 patrons in the establishment who possessed and were consuming alcoholic beverages. The license assigned to this establishment allows service only until 1:00 am. In addition, while reviewing the business records of the establishment, BLLC inspectors observed that the Alcohol Awareness certification for the establishment had expired.

Hearing notes

Mr. Gary Maslan represented the licensees and admitted, on their behalf, that the violations occurred. He proffered that his clients run a small bar that “caters to the Spanish community.” At 1:08am, they were trying to get their customers to leave, but there were some stragglers. Almost all of the beverage containers were empty, said Maslan. His clients have created a new policy to stop serving at 12:30, so that this does not occur again. Maslan said that his clients do have employee records, but they could not find them on the night in question. Also, the alcohol management certification for five employees at this business has been updated.

Zoning B-2-2
Neighborhood Fells Point
Area demographics 53% White, 32% Black, 8% Asian, 3% 2 or more races; 4% Hispanic ethnicity; 6% households have children under age 18; Median Household Income: $38,331; 5.5 % households live below poverty line.
Does corp entity exist, in good standing? Yes; yes.
Location of entity’s principal office Baltimore, MD
One applicant reside in Balt for 2 yrs? N/A
Pecuniary interest of Baltimore City resident N/A
Attorney for licensee Mr. Gary Maslan
# in support 2
Attorney for community None
# of protestants 0
# of inspectors/police officers 2
Result of hearing Responsible for violations. $500 fine.
Vote tally Unanimous
Portions of state law cited in decision None
Other reasons given for decision None
Issues raised in audit present in this case or other issues observed None

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