21 Aug 2014
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Kamenetz: Recher Responsible for Altercation Outside Towson Business

Officials say investigation could result in a liquor board hearing and sanctions against the business' liquor license.

Kamenetz: Recher Responsible for Altercation Outside Towson Business

UPDATED (7:51 p.m.)—Owners of the Recher Theater in Towson are responsible for an altercation early Sunday that resulted in the arrests of seven people, County Executive Kevin Kamenetz said Tuesday.

"There is nothing wrong with downtown Towson," Kamenetz said. "There is nothing wrong with the vast majority of the businesses that operate in in downtown Towson. There's nothing wrong with our college students—particularly Towson University."

"I really lay the blame on one particular operator here who delegated responsibility to some third-party promoter and I've got a real problem with that because they have a liquor license and they have responsibility to maintain not only order within their premises but those who are outside their premises who are there because of the event they are promoting," Kamenetz said.

Kamenetz and police Chief Jim Johnson criticized the owners of the Recher Theater and their handling of a private event at the club that ended in a fight outside.

Johnson said police were already patrolling the area in larger numbers because of homecoming activities at Towson University.

"We were well aware there were univeristy events and officers were in place to deal with that evening," Johnson said, adding that no students from Towson were involved in the incident.

"Only one individiual identified himself as a college student," Johnson said."We do not believe that it had anything to do with Towson University homecoming festivities."

Johnson said he did not know what college the person attended.

Kamenetz said many of those who attended the event at the Recher Theater Saturday and early Sunday "were from outside the Baltimore metropolitan area."

Johnson said promoters of the event directed people to Towson via social media when other events they had planned that night "did not develop."

Johnson declined to name the promoter of the event, said to be Theta Mu Mu chapter of Omega Psi Phi fraternity, a post-collegiate group not directly affiliated with any university.

Police continue to investigate the incident, Johnson said, and added that such incidents in Towson are relatively rare.

Kamenetz said the conclusion of the investigation could result in the police forwarding the case to the Baltimore County Liquor Board Commission.

Despite the incident Sunday, officials said concerns about Towson being unsafe are unwarranted.

"We're very confident that an incident like this will not repeat itself," Johnson said.

A test of those words could come as soon as tomorrow.

An event called Barstool Blackout was scheduled for tomorrow evening at the bar. Promoters announced on their website that they were postponing until a later date due to the brawl. The event attracted students from Towson University last year and is sold out this year.

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