Rumrunner's Old Towne Bar and Grill in Downtown Anchorage has come under fire from state lawmakers, citing violent incidents that have occurred at the establishment.
Rep. Les Gara and Sen. Johnny Ellis, who both represent the Downtown area, sent a letter to the state Alcoholic Beverage Control Board saying Rumrunner's should not be able to renew its liquor license.
The popular Downtown bar was the scene of a September 2010 shooting that wounded two women, for which Brandon Maevaga Tautua was sentenced to 12 years in prison in May 2011, as well as an August 2011 beating in which police say 22-year-old Ryan Smith inflicted severe head injuries on Vincent Mayer, 23. The bar's owners are awaiting a January trial over the alleged beating of a customer by a former bouncer at the bar.
Downtown Anchorage Assembly member Patrick Flynn has gone a step further than Gara and Ellis, saying the bar should also not be able to sell its license.
“I believe they need to pay the penalty for the cost they have imposed on this community,” Flynn said. “People have been assaulted; people there have been sexually assaulted, associated with that establishment; their employees have beat up people. At some point somebody has to stand up and be the responsible adult in the room.”
ABC estimates that a liquor license is worth about $250,000. If Rumrunner's isn't allowed to sell its liquor license, another business can’t use the license.Shirely Coté, the director of the board, says Rumrunners has more violations than any other bar in Anchorage.
“Absolutely, more than anybody else ever,” Coté said. “There are a lot of violations here.”
Rumrunner's did not return Channel 2's calls requesting comment Wednesday.
Contact Rebecca Palsha