City takes no action against Rooney's

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BELOIT - The Alcohol Beverage License Control Committee (ABLCC) took no action Tuesday against Rooney's Pub & Grub after the business took proactive steps to prevent violent crime that has plagued the popular Portland Avenue establishment since May of 2018.

Rooney's owner Glenda Kline told the committee members the bar has purchased a metal detecting wand and an identification card reader, and plans to hire bouncers for parties.

Kline also said the business parted ways with a DJ that Kline said was part of the problem, noting there hasn't been any incidents since the April 14 shooting at the bar. Security cameras have been in place at Rooney's and helped identify suspects in past incidents, including the April 14 shooting, Kline said.

Kline previously met with Beloit Police Department staff to discuss solutions, with command staff recommending the added security and ID card reader.

"We are trying our best and you have no way of knowing who's good and who's bad or who is going to come in with a gun," Kline told the committee. "But we are going to put these things in place so we don't have these issues again."

Kline also said she intended to sell the business due to health reasons. The authority to issue sanctions against licensed businesses rests with the city council, based on reccomendations made by the ABLCC.

• On May 19, 2018, two suspects entered the bar armed with handguns and demanded money before escaping. During the incident a shot was fired into the floor, according to court records. Cory L. Clark, 33, of Rockford was identified a week after the armed robbery as a suspect in the case. He was arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service in Missouri on May 31, 2018. In October of 2018, Clark went to trial and was convicted of two counts of armed robbery with use of force as party to a crime, one count of second-degree recklessly endangering safety as a party to a crime and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon. Clark's case has been delayed after he fired his most recent attorney on the case. He was set to be sentenced on May 23, and is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 21, according to court records. The second suspect in the case remains at-large.

• On Feb. 23, officers responded to the bar after a report of gunfire. On March 1, police arrested Anthony M. Cortes, 26, who is charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, second-degree recklessly endangering safety use of a dangerous weapon as a repeater, disorderly conduct as a repeater and obstructing an officer as a repeater after allegedly firing multiple shots into the air outside the bar after an argument inside the bar. The argument spilled out into the parking lot with two groups of people gathering in the area, according to court records. The case remains open and ongoing in Rock County Circuit Court.

• On April 14, an argument turned violent and gunfire was reported.

In the aftermath, Terey A. Vance, 36, of Beloit, was found shot multiple times in the jaw, neck and lower right hip, according to Rock County Circuit Court records.

Nine days after the shooting, an Indianapolis man was arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service in connection with the shooting. Daniel T. Blackshear, 26, is charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide. According to court records, as Vance and a woman approached the group, Blackshear "steps back, raises his hand up and then shoots" Vance. His case remains open and ongoing in Rock County Circuit Court, according to court records.

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