By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Bo'Maz under fire for chaos
Placeholder Image
Following an incident in which multiple gunshots were fired in the Bo’Maz nightclub parking lot, Liberty County Sheriff’s Department Sgt. Elpidio Fratichelli advised the Walthourville City Council to close the club for a minimum of 30 days.
“I think they need to be shut down and held accountable as to what they’re going to do if they continue to do business in Walthourville,” the deputy said during Tuesday night’s council meeting. “It is time to put the onus on the owner to get it right.”
Fratichelli was one of many local officers dispatched to Bo’Maz around 3:30 a.m. Sunday when the firing of more than 10 gunshots in the parking lot caused chaos as club-goers fled in their cars.
The deputy said the incident, which included a water bottle being thrown at his squad car, was evidence of club owners Bobby and Mazie Fabian’s “inadequate and ill-trained” security at the popular hangout.
The lack of proper security and the unpredictability of the crowd make for a bad recipe, according to Fratichelli.
“Bo’Maz, in my opinion, is a significant safety hazard to this community and its assigned officers,” he said. “...I strongly fear that an occasion will come when I or one of my officers will have to, under the guidance of the law, use physical force in that parking lot and hurt someone or have someone hurt one of my officers.”
After handing the council a stack of reports stemming from incidents at the club during the past five months, Fratichelli said it was time for the city to step in.
“I believe and understand that you as a council and as a mayor have the authority at this point, based on the evidence, to take their license for a 30-day period and give the owners 30 days to figure out how to fix their problems,” he said.
But Councilwoman Luciria Lovette wanted to proceed with caution before revoking the Fabians’ business license.
“I understand your concern,” she told Fratichelli. “But I want to give them a chance to defend themselves.”
The rest of the council agreed with Lovette. Members voted to hold a show-cause hearing to allow the Fabians to give their side of the story before deciding whether to revoke their license.
A preliminary hearing was set for 6:30 p.m. June 6 at the Walthourville City Hall.
Walthourville Mayor Henry Frasier said he hopes the council will make the best decision “for all the citizens of the city.”
Councilman Charlie Anderson did not attend the meeting.
Efforts to reach the Fabians for comment were unsuccessful.
Sign up for our e-newsletters