Residents say violent incident at Lakewood bar points to bigger problem

Shots were fired at Game On bar early Monday

Residents say violent incident at Lakewood bar points to bigger problem

LAKEWOOD, Ohio (WOIO) - Violence outside a Lakewood bar on Monday is a cause of concern for some residents, pointing to a big picture.

Just after midnight, the Lakewood Police Department says officers responded to a report of shots fired at Game On bar, near the corner of Detroit and Cordova avenues. Police say individuals were arguing in the bar’s parking lot when one of them pulled out a gun and started shooting into the air and then fleeing the scene. Police say no one was hurt.

Officers tracked the suspect down, shortly later, near his home in Cleveland. Police say they found a weapon, ammo, and expended cartridges in the man’s car. He was arrested and now faces several charges, including firing a gun in public.

The latest violent incident in Lakewood comes about a week after city leaders held a virtual town hall to address safety concerns from residents.

Last month, police say a man was shot in Madison Park. And then on St. Patrick’s Day, officers responded to an assault involving a knife at the Riverwood Cafe.

Kara Maloney has lived in Lakewood for about two years now and says she walks everywhere, including to Game On bar, where she and friends watched the Cleveland Indians’ home opener on Monday. She says she considers the bar, and the area surrounding it, to be very safe and was surprised to find out about the incident that happened there early Monday morning.

“I feel like everywhere, each way, is very safe,” she tells 19 News.

Lakewood City Council President Dan O’Malley agrees but says the country as a whole has a gun problem. O’Malley says he and other members of the council are backing a plan to have more police officers patrolling by foot. He also says bars and restaurants that Lakewood police are continually called to need to be held accountable.

“It’s time that we start calling some of them out,” O’Malley says, noting one way to do so would be to revoke the establishment’s liquor license.

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