Local nightspot is cause for concern

Published 10:10 am Tuesday, March 25, 2014

AHOSKIE – Following a shooting and stabbing this past weekend, the case file is growing to possibly shut down Slider’s Lounge located inside the Ahoskie Inn.

Ahoskie Police Chief Troy Fitzhugh said he is seriously considering moving forward with the “nuisance abatement” process against the owner of Slider’s, which is leased by an individual.

“We are continuing to investigate the possibility of using the nuisance abatement procedure,” said Fitzhugh. “The number of calls we respond to at Slider’s and the severity of those calls are growing in number.”

The latest of those calls came at approximately 1 a.m. Saturday (March 22) when APD officers responded to what was reported as a large crowd and shots being fired outside the lounge.

“Upon arrival, my officers did observe a large crowd and then heard for themselves the shots being fired,” Fitzhugh said. “Luckily, no one was shot, but a vehicle was damaged.”

This led to two arrests, Fitzhugh said.

Chenail Larfate Jordan, 24, of Flythe Street, Conway, was charged with four felonies – inciting a riot, possession of a stolen firearm, possession of a concealed weapon, and illegally discharging a weapon – and four misdemeanors – two drug violations, one count of resisting arrest, and one count of damage to property.

Jordan was jailed under a $100,000 secured bond and is scheduled to make his first court appearance today (Tuesday) in Winton.

Jahmel Kevon Faison, 22, of Woodard Blvd. in Conway was charged with felonious disturbing the peace, and two misdemeanor drug violations. He was jailed under a $20,000 secured bond and has a court date today.

More charges are pending, Fitzhugh said.

Further investigation revealed that one individual, whose identity was not made public, was stabbed the same night inside Slider’s. Fitzhugh said that victim was transported to Vidant Roanoke-ChowanHospital and later airlifted to Vidant Medical Center in Greenville where he is listed in critical, but stable condition.

No arrest has been made in the stabbing, which remains under investigation by the Ahoskie Police.

Fitzhugh thanked his officers along with Hertford County Sheriff’s deputies, the Murfreesboro Police Department and the North Carolina Highway Patrol with answering the call at Slider’s.

As far as the nuisance abatement, Fitzhugh said that process begins with North Carolina ALE (Alcohol Law Enforcement).

According to the North Carolina Department of Public Safety, ALE special agents are specially trained in the use of the state’s public nuisance law and civil procedure. Agents work with local governments and citizens to rid neighborhoods of drug houses, liquor houses, clubs and other nuisance properties that spawn serious and violent criminal activity. The property can be a bar, mobile home park, house, restaurant, hotel or vacant lot.

After a written request by the local district attorney, chief of police or sheriff, ALE investigates nuisance properties and determines if the location meets the criteria for a nuisance lawsuit. If it is, the ALE special agent coordinates affidavits, deed searches, and research from police records and presents the district attorney with a court-ready case against the property owner. If the property owner loses the case, he or she can face fines or forfeiture of property.

When the case is filed in court, a judge decides whether to issue a temporary restraining order.  If the preliminary injunction is granted, then the business closes until the court rules on the case.  If the property owners are found guilty of operating a nuisance property, the owners may be fined or may have to forfeit their property.  The property owners are prohibited from ever operating a nuisance anywhere in North Carolina, and the property itself can never be operated as a nuisance, regardless of who owns it.

Each year, ALE special agents investigate about 30-40 properties that are the source of nearly 12,000 reported criminal acts, including murders, assaults, drug dealing, repeated gunfire and other acts of violence. While criminal law removes the perpetrator of the crime, the civil nuisance law holds the property owner responsible, focusing on the location of repeated criminal activity.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

email author More by Cal