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Two more suspensions

12 Crane also faces six months probation

J. Gabriel McCarthy listens to comments at Thursday’s Liquor License Board meeting at Town Hall. Gus Steeves. (click for larger version)
August 29, 2010
SOUTHBRIDGE — Following suit with last week's Liquor License Board decision, Town Manager Christopher Clark suspended the common victual and entertainment licenses for 12 Crane St. for two weeks starting today, with six months' probation thereafter.

"I don't wish to have double jeopardy or additional punishment piled on," Clark said at the end of his own hearing Thursday. He added, however, that "additional activities beyond the scope of the license" would warrant revisiting the issue, because he believes "in progressive discipline."

The issues at hand occurred July 10, when 12 Crane hosted a large rave that resulted in 5 allegedly drug-related arrests, four for dealing ecstasy and/or cocaine, one for starting a fight with a graduation party upstairs.

Police Sgt. Carlos Dingui said the event attracted 500-700 people, including a group of fire performers and masseurs that had been specifically prohibited by Chief Daniel Charette. Police received "numerous complaints" about noise from neighbors, observed the drug deals directly, saw a security man and woman having sex in public, and helped a woman who got burned by the fire pit, he said.

Although the show's promoters had about 10 security people there alongside three uniformed officers, they were "adequate at best, and I'm giving them a lot of credit at that," Dingui said. "I'd say the officers were there alone."

Despite all of those things, Dingui said this was not the norm for the four-year-old establishment. Previously, 12 Crane had had no significant problems, and even the majority of attendees to this rave "were a good crowd," he said. To him, this was one event "that got out of hand."

For more on this story, please see Monday's Southbridge Evening News.

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