Jamaica nightclub Jouvay loses its liquor license after recent history of violence

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A string of shootings and a recent history of violence prompted the State Liquor Authority (SLA) to suspend a Jamaica bar’s liquor license.

On Nov. 20, the SLA issued and emergency suspension of the liquor license at Jouvay Inc., located at 147-02 Liberty Ave. Effective immediately, no alcohol can be bought or consumed on the premises.

“The increasing violence and disorder at the bar, including another shooting just last week, clearly shows the licensee is unable or unwilling to run a safe, lawful establishment,” said Counsel to the Authority Christopher R. Riano. “The SLA has an obligation to ensure this violence does not continue, and today’s emergency suspension should serve as a warning to other licensees who jeopardize the safety of their patrons.”

According to the NYPD, Jouvay has “become a burden on police resources,” racking up 90 calls to 911 between Jan. 1, 2017, to present, including serious, violent incidents.

During one particular incident on June 11, a bystander outside of the bar was shot nine times before climbing into his car and driving two blocks before crashing. The victim was rushed to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

On Oct. 20, police arrested a bouncer at the bar who allegedly shot a teenager in the thigh directly outside of the club.

The most recent incident took place on Nov. 11. The NYPD responded to a 911 call regarding shots fired near Jouvay. Upon their arrival, officers heard three additional gunshots and saw a large crowd of patrons fighting in the street directly in from of the bar. Video surveillance obtained by the NYPD showed a large group of patrons fighting in front of the bar and quickly dispersing when shots were fired.

On Nov. 16, the SLA charged Jouvay with three violations, including operating a disorderly premise, sustaining a continuing pattern of noise, misconduct and disorder, and for becoming a focal point for police attention.

The SLA had previously charged Jouvay with nine violations on Oct. 31, including employing unlicensed bouncers, operating a disorderly premise related to the shooting on Oct. 20, failure to maintain books and records and for becoming a focal point for police attention.

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