By Tracy Clemons
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (KSDK) -
A holiday weekend murder near an East St. Louis night club has caused the club's liquor license to be temporarily suspended.
Kenneth S. Richards, 20, was shot and killed in the Sunday night
in the parking lot behind Denese's Place. Police say the men who shot him clearly targeted him.
"It appears as if there's very little that could have been done regarding keeping this young man from being killed," East St. Louis Mayor and Liquor Commissioner Alvin Parks said. "It appears that this young man was a target of some type of vendetta or beef or hit, and he was going to be shot wherever he appeared."
"I'm not sure why this happened. But it happened," club owner Denese Drummond said. "I had the lighting, the cameras, the security."
Citing a security ordinance violation, the liquor commission suspended Drummond's license Tuesday, pending a hearing. She did not have a licensed, bonded, and certified security officer on duty.
"That is the one area where she fell short," Parks said.
At the hearing, the commission suspended her liquor license for two weeks. Her attorney, William Daniel, says nothing about this is fair.
"It's unfortunate that Denese's Place has been tarred with something that happened away from her place," Daniel said. "But there was a technical violation that security guard on duty was not fully certified, licensed and bonded. She's correcting that."
"The ruling is fair because there were rules that needed to be abided by that were not abided by. And it's very important that establishments follow the rules," Mayor Parks said.
Parks and the commission have put a bulk of the responsibility for securing that lot on Drummond since her patrons use it. But William Daniel says this is the city's lot.
"It's first and foremost the duty of the East St. Louis Police Department, which is understaffed...."
Mayor Parks says it's a team effort.
"Generally speaking, the businesses that are thriving that late happen to be bars or taverns or nightclubs, so we're going to make sure we have as much presence as possible in addition to what their private security happens to be. But at no point can we have our police presence taking the place of actual in person security that establishments should have," he said.
Drummond was also ordered to pay a $500 fine.