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Brawl Hearing Leads to Black Lobster Liquor License Suspension

The Salem Licensing Board punished The Black Lobster with a two-day liquor license suspension Tuesday night.

The Black Lobster, Salem.
The Black Lobster, Salem.
The Salem police officers who responded to a brawl outside of The Black Lobster in November recounted the incident at Monday's meeting of the Salem Licensing Board and the situation they described was a desperate one.

Officers Joshua Gerard and Roberson Troncoso testified that at 12:55 a.m. on Nov. 28, they responded to a report of a large fight outside of the Bridge Street restaurant and found a crowd of between 50 and 75 people watching two men fighting in the parking lot.

While members of the unruly crowd called them names, touched them and interfered with their efforts, Gerard said he and Troncoso struggled with the combatants while waiting for backup to arrive - all nine officers who were on duty that night responded to the incident. 

Troncoso, who suffered a thumb injury while making an arrest, described it as "a scary night." 

Once backup arrived, London Burton, 21, of 7 Central St., Beverly, was arrested on charges of resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. William J. Keenan, 24, of 82 Webb St., Salem, was arrested on charges of disorderly conduct and assault and battery. Matthew N. Pereira, 21, of 64 Butler St., Salem, was arrested on a charge of disorderly conduct.

Prior to imposing a two-day liquor license suspension, with one day to be served and the other to be held in abeyance for six months, board Chairman Bob St. Pierre told Black Lobster general manager Pete Kastrinakis and manager Stephen Damiano that what bothered him most about the incident was that no one from restaurant called for police or offered any help to the officers outside.

"You saw two officers were out there on the ground and I think your staff should have at least gone out there to help hold back the crowd so that they could do their job," St. Pierre said. "I'm not suggesting you get out there and roll around with them...but someone should have been out there to keep people off of their backs." 

In addition to the liquor license suspension, which will be served on Thursday, Jan. 23, board members ordered that Kastrinakis and Damiano return to their next meeting with a detailed plan for how to respond to similar incidents in the future.
sue January 14, 2014 at 07:07 PM
Wow...i'm appalled no one helped the officers...it really saddens me to what this society has become. mobsters with no conscious or sense of duty or integrity.

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