Harrisburg City Leaders cracking down on local bars - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Harrisburg City Leaders cracking down on local bars

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By Arnold Wyrick - bio | email

HARRISBURG, IL (KFVS) - Harrisburg bars are getting some unwanted attention of city leaders and police.

According to the Harrisburg Police Chief Bob Smith the problems at Poor Boys Lounge located at 300 Raymond Street, began back in the Summer of 2011.

"We had an incident back in July 2011 where an aggravated battery was committed," said Chief Smith. "We've had incidents where people have had to be life-flighted from our hospital due to the severity of their injuries at that location."

On Tuesday morning the owner of the bar, Sheila Harmon was called to appear before the Harrisburg Liquor Commission for a hearing on the problems.

"We had an incident in the early morning hours of New Years Day where a man was critically stabbed outside the bar," said Chief Smith.

And it's not only the customers who are being attacked.

"There's been incidents where my police officers have been assaulted."

The bar is located in residential area of town. Now some of those who live close to the bar are worried about their own safety.

"I'm just worried about my kids," said Carla Foster of Harrisburg. "We just bought our house a few months ago. And the stabbing happened outside the bar in the parking lot. What if that would've been a bullet? That could've hit one of my kids while they were sleeping in their bedroom at 2:30 in the morning. I fear for my family. And any other family that lives near the bar."

Poor Boys Lounge isn't the only liquor establishment in town that city leaders and police are keeping a close eye on. They're also paying close attention to what's going on at EL Shagwells.

"Over the past year we have had more police calls to Shagwells, then we have at Poor Boys Lounge,' said Chief Smith. "But the calls haven't been as violent of incidents as what we've had to deal with at Poor Boys Lounge."

Harrisburg's Mayor Eric Gregg, says he's going to decide what to do about the problems at Poor Boys Lounge and what level of punishment he's going to hand down against the business on Friday.



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