Providence Licensing Board closes club after violent night - News, Weather and Classifieds for Southern New England

Providence Licensing Board closes club after violent night

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Club Karma on Richmond Street will remain closed throughout the weekend after its license was suspended Saturday afternoon.

Major Thomas Verdi of the Providence Police Department spoke about the victims at the licensing board hearing, "both our shooting victims are from Massachusetts. One is 24, the other is 26. Both have extensive criminal histories."

Providence Police say the two people shot inside Club Karma around 2:00 Saturday morning are members of the Walk Hill Bloods gang in Boston and have 18 arrests between them; both are in critical but stable condition at Rhode Island Hospital tonight.  No arrests have been made in the case as police continue to collect evidence.

Patrolman Ken Matsumoto was first on the scene; he told the board he saw a shell casing and bullet hole near the men's bathroom during his investigation inside the club as chaos ensued outside.

According to Detective John St. Lawrenece "there was a large crowd that just came from the club. They were in the street. There was a victim that was shot lying in the street."

Police say responding officers had a difficult time controlling the crowd of more than 60 people in the streets and that they had trouble getting an ambulance to the victims, and now they worry about public safety and if retaliation is forthcoming.

Major Verdi raised those concerns at the meeting saying "was it another Massachusetts gang? Was it a Providence gang? We don't know. So we have, rightfully so, some very serious concerns about Karma opening now until there is a full show cause hearing."

The Board of Licenses will meet again on Monday to discuss further action.


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