Liquor board suspends license for nightspot

May 01, 1997


Staff Writer

The Washington County Board of Alcoholic Beverages License on Wednesday suspended the liquor license of Supe's, a nightspot on Jonathan Street, following police testimony about rowdy behavior and noise.

In addition to the suspension, Larry Tyrone Stanton, 48, liquor license holder/owner of the establishment at 14 N. Jonathan St., was fined $2,000 by unanimous vote of the three-member board.

Stanton and his attorney, Ed Button, persuaded the board to reconsider the fine if the club can prove that it has cleaned up its act since March 23.


Police said after Wednesday's hearing that the club was the site of a major disturbance, inside and outside, early Sunday when the crowd left at closing time.

Officers from several agencies were called in to help Hagerstown City Police restore order, police said.

Testifying Wednesday was Sgt. Margaret Kline who described a series of police calls to the club from October through March 23.

Kline said there were seven calls to Supe's in October, four in November, 11 in December, four in January, 15 in February and seven in March.

"We're interested in what happens outside as well as inside," said Board Chairman Donald Mellott. "You can't interfere with the community."

Mellott wanted to know if Stanton was complying with the requirement on his liquor license that selling food be at least 51 percent of his business.

Kline said she made three random checks at the club, in uniform, and she saw food in any quantity on only one occasion. She saw beer bottles on every table, she said.

Stanton said food is the major business at the club.

Most of the complaints were for underage drinking, fights, noise and littering, Kline said.

"Sometimes, a whole shift of officers is down there," said Capt. Robert Voytko. "When the bar closes, the problem goes north on Jonathan Street."

Stanton, who has owned the club for about five years, said he lets only about 200 people into the club at a time, despite the fact he says he is rated for 300 by the state fire marshal.

He said he does let in people who are under 21 but they aren't allowed to drink alcohol.

Stanton said he pays to have the parking lot across the street cleaned up when it is littered.

"I don't think it's possible to overcome the problems operating the way you are now," said board member Robert Everhart.

Stanton has 30 days in which to appeal the decision.

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