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6th Street Bar Lawsuit Against City Progressing, Resolution in Talks

A Monroe bar is suing the city because of the details behind denying a liquor license.
A copy of the police report concerning the shots fired at 6th Street Bar. The shooting was deemed accidental. (Monroe Police Department)
A copy of the police report concerning the shots fired at 6th Street Bar. The shooting was deemed accidental. (Monroe Police Department)
UPDATE:

Mark Neal, the attorney representing the owners of Sixth Street Bar in Monroe, says the lawsuit against the City of Monroe is progressing toward a trial.

The bar is suing the city because of the details behind denying a liquor license. The city council denied a liquor license in December to the bar's owners because of ongoing problems with noise, parking, safety concerns, and a shooting that occurred in the area (see below for details).

Neal says although the case may be going to trial, he has also been discussing an amicable resolution with the city attorney, in an effort to get the license back.

Neal says the bar is within a commercial area, and has been operating as a bar serving alcohol since 1943.

He says he feels strongly that they will get this resolved before going to court.

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MONROE -- A Monroe bar is suing the city because of the details behind denying a liquor license.

The city council denied a liquor license in December to the 6th Street Bar owned by Josh Nicolson.

With no business without the liquor license, the bar's owner had no choice but to close.

City councilman Ray Armstrong said the license was denied because of ongoing problems with noise, parking, safety concerns, and a shooting that occurred in the area. He said residents had come forward to the city with complaints about patrons parking on their property and noisiness.

Mark Neal, the attorney for Nicholson, said his client bought the bar last May from a previous owner, thus inheriting existing problems and run ins with the council. The bar's ownership has passed through many hands over its 30 years of business, according to Neal and city leaders.

Neal said the council gave his client a list of requirements in dealing with the safety, noise, and parking complaints. Neal said his client put more money into the facility to meet these requirements, and even marketed the bar to an older crowd.

Armstrong said they believe the problems continued, and cited an incident where a resident decided to move away shortly after a bullet from a discharged gun at 6th Street bar had struck the home.

According to a police report with the Monroe Police Department, the shooting was deemed accidental. Neal said an employee of 6th Street Bar brought a gun to the bar during after-hours to show to another co-worker. During this time, the gun accidentally discharged, hitting a nearby home. The owner called police to report the incident. No injuries were reported and no charges were filed.

"My client fired the employee who brought the gun to work after hours," said Neal. "My client actually approached the neighbor to apologize for the employee's actions."

Neal said the actions of the council are unfair.

"My client will dismiss the case tomorrow and forgo any damages or rights to lost profits if the council will return the license," he said.
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