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Jan 14, 2008

Brawl at Riverside Tavern sends two to hospital

Story PictureA night at a popular nightspot deteriorated into chaos early Saturday morning and left two people hospitalized. According to police, just after midnight an old argument between two groups of men climaxed when a heated exchange inside the Riverside Tavern escalated to blows and then a free for all. The melee caused substantial damage to the bar and eventually ended up in the parking lot. By the time it was over, there was a lot of shattered glass and liquor bottles, broken chairs and tables and even damaged walls. Manager of the restaurant, Dustin Bowen, told Channel Five today how the fight started, how it affected his business and what he’ll do to prevent such incidents from recurring.

Dustin Bowen, Manager, Riverside, Tavern
“There was a slight misunderstanding. I believe it stemmed from some wedding from quite some time ago with the two parties that were involved. But there were about fifteen people involved in that fight. Yes, everybody was men.

Well, being that there were that many people involved in the fight we had to call extra security in and also the police to come and assist us with that.”

Marion Ali
“I understand that a whole lot of damage was done inside the business itself. Have you done an assessment and will there be any charges levied against any of these people?”

Dustin Bowen
“Actually, I think the—we’ve done the assessment, we’re looking over it again. Our interest was to get everything repaired on Saturday early in the morning. We did close for lunch at that time and we reopened at six p.m. on Saturday evening for regular business and we will do so this week. Everything is ok now.”

Marion Ali
“Will they or have they been banned?”

Dustin Bowen
“They have already been banned. Anybody that gets in some type of scuffle, any fight or argument and causes any trouble like this at our establishment are always banned, for future reference, definitely. Anybody causing that kinda problem here will be banned.”

“You come in here, you misbehave; it affects everybody. It doesn’t affect just you personally, just for you getting charged or some money having to be paid, but in respect your family and everybody else takes a hit too. Reputations go down and certain things happen that way. So just to bring it to another level of respect and realise that this is a respectable establishment and that we should treat it that way and we should treat ourselves that way.”

Sr. Supt. Chester Williams, Deputy O.C. Eastern Division
“The police later on managed to took command of the situation where they detained four persons and two persons were taken to the hospital to undergo treatment. Those persons were kept in custody until Saturday evening at which time the other party gave statements to the police indicating that they do not want to pursue any sort of criminal actions against the other party. The other party, likewise, mentioned that they don’t want anything against the next party. And as a result of that, since we have no complainant, no statement was made except to the statement given by the victims who got injured at the hospital that they do not request any court actions. The police had to release those persons who were kept in custody.”

We understand that as many as five shots were fired outside the establishment during the fight but police have no idea who the gunman was. Bowen says the parties involved in the brawl have agreed to pay for the physical damages as well as the lost business suffered during Saturday’s lunch hour. He added that the company will also train its staff to better prevent situations like this one. Our information is that those involved in the fight included Ben Bou Nahra, Michael Meighan, Luigi and Myron Marin and Andrew and Eugene Zabaneh Junior. The Marin brothers had to be taken for treatment at the K.H.M.H. but were released Saturday evening.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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