Bar license suspended for violating order

FOLLANSBEE — The West Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control Administration has suspended the liquor license of a local bar, saying customers were being served on the premises, a violation of a statewide order aimed at reducing the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Gary Robinson, spokesman for the commission, said the license for Games On LLC, owner of Mustang Sally’s on Eldersville Road, has been suspended through the duration of the state of emergency declared by Gov. Jim Justice, after which its status will be evaluated.

The investigating ABCA officer cited Executive Order 2-20, in which Justice prohibited “on-premises consumption” at restaurants and bars to prevent large numbers from gathering there while stating such businesses may serve food and drink for pickup or delivery.

It also states the ABCA “has been delegated authority pursuant to the State of Emergency Declaration to suspend the provisions of its regulatory statues or rules to the extent necessary to cope with the emergency, and any such suspension will be in harmony with the intent of this Executive Order.”

Robinson said the owners received two verbal warnings not to serve customers on-site on March 18 but continued to allow patrons to congregate there.

A report filed by the Brooke County Sheriff’s Department states a deputy accompanied an ABCA officer to the bar that day.

The report states when the officers knocked on the door, no one answered initially and when they did, several people stepped out.

Jennifer Mallicone, 59, of Weirton — who was identified as the bar’s owner — has been charged with obstructing official business. Her case is pending in Brooke County Magistrate Court.

Robinson said the violation comes at a time when other businesses are complying with the order. He said he wasn’t aware of any other West Virginia bars whose licenses had been suspended in connection with it.

ABCA Commissioner Fred Wooton said of the suspension, “This was necessary to protect the citizens of West Virginia and should send a strong message that illegal activity during the state of emergency will not be tolerated.”

Multiple attempts to reach the business were unsuccessful.

(Scott can be contacted at wscott@heraldstaronline.com.)


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *


Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today