CHICAGO (CBS) — According to the state, the bar at the center of the police shooting of a security guard in Robbins should not have been serving alcohol in the first place.
Not only did the bar have an expired liquor license, it was the fifth infraction in the past four years for the establishment. CBS 2 has learned the Village of Robbins should have been keeping track.
Tywond Hamilton knew 26-year-old Jemel Roberson since he was a teenager. Four days after he was shot and killed by a Midlothian police office while protecting the patrons at Manny’s Blue Room from an active shooter, Hamilton came to pay his respects.
“All I know is Jemel was doing his job and he was doing what was right,” Hamilton said.
But now questions are being raised about whether the bar should have been open at all on that fateful Sunday morning. Illinois Department of Revenue records showed that Manny’s liquor license expired on September 30 of this year, which according to the state, renders any local liquor license invalid.
But public posts on the bar’s Facebook page show the nightlife continued at Manny’s well past that expiration.
A promotion from October 8 advertises drink specials. Meanwhile, another promotion from November 1, ten days before Roberson’s death, it advertises “free shots for the first 50 ladies who come to the bar.”
The Illinois Liquor Control Commission said it leaves it up to the local municipalities to check the ILCC website to keep bars up-to-date. Requests for comment from Manny’s have gone unreturned.
Two people who entered the bar Thursday afternoon told CBS 2 they were not affiliated with the owners. When asked how they had keys to the bar, they said they had equipment inside and added that they had no comment about the liquor license expiration.
State records show Liquor Control Act violations dating to 2014. A witness who worked at the bar told CBS 2 the shooter on Sunday morning seemed intoxicated. But Hamilton think multiple parties need to be held accountable.
“From the bar owners, to Robbins, to Midlothian, from the top down,” Hamilton said.
CBS 2 asked the Village of Robbins for a comment on Manny’s expired license. CBS 2 was told that a response would come Thursday, but so far nothing has been received.