Downtown Cleveland bar cited after woman's tragic fall; victim remains critical

)Source: WOIO)
)Source: WOIO)

DOWNTOWN CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The downtown Cleveland bar where a woman fell on St. Patrick's Day has just been cited.

The citation, from the Department of Public Safety, shows the owner of Spirits has been charged with serving intoxicating liquor to a person under the age of 21.

Spirits was closed Tuesday, for the fourth day in a row, following the accident.

"When they give an establishment a liquor license, there are a lot of requirements that the establishment must oblige by," said Criminal Defense Lawyer Susan Moran. "The mere fact this child was in there drinking underage exposes them to the liability of losing their license."

Moran said, typically, the person who's underage gets cited. "I think, because of the fact she became very injured, it's hyper scrutiny and it should be," she said.

Moran said the West 6th Street bar's citations don't automatically lead to its liquor license removal because there are factors lawyers can argue.

"Perhaps this girl had an fake identification card, perhaps they were assessing due diligence," she said.

The citations come as Cleveland 19 News gets a closer look at recent inspection reports from the City of Cleveland's Division of Fire. The report, which was conducted on Friday, March 17, found the inspector deemed the railings unsafe. It also shows the bar wasn't supposed to be using its second floor, which is where the 20-year-old fell from.

"You need to be in full compliance or they will close you down," Moran said. "If they're being cited with these failures and these safety failures and someone gets hurt, they're in for a very difficult challenge."

The report also shows Spirits had an obstructed exit, out of date extinguishers and a sprinkler system that wasn't maintained.

Other inspection reports Cleveland 19 News reviewed found the club was cited on Feb. 25 for overcrowding. The owner remedied that situation immediately.

The victim, whose name has not been released, remains in critical condition according to MetroHealth Hospital spokesperson Tina Adrundel. Tuesday MetroHealth said they will no longer give update on the young woman's condition.

Spirits is a bar and restaurant that opened in August of 2015. It calls itself downtown Cleveland's "newest hot spot to eat, drink, and dance.

Cleveland 19 News reached out to Warehouse Entertainment Group, LLC's owner, George Nakhle, for comment, but we haven't heard back.

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