Alleged drug use at Sunset karaoke club leads to liquor license suspension

A Sunset Park karaoke club has had its liquor license suspended after cops discovered patrons at the club with drugs in their possession on several occasions, according to the State Liquor Authority (SLA).

The panel on February 23 suspended the liquor license of DC KTV, at 715 61st Street, following a special meeting of the full board.

That means that the club, formally Youngs Entertainment (USA) cannot sell liquor or permit the consumption of alcoholic beverages on the premises, a move applauded by SLA Counsel Christopher Riano who contended, “The extensive history of allowing illegal substances to be used inside this establishment is incredibly alarming and is evidence of the severe threat that this establishment poses to its patrons and neighbors.”

The suspension follows a series of inspections of the club by law enforcement. According to the SLA, three inspections of the club by the NYPD over a course of four weeks turned up “at least eight patrons in possession of a controlled substance during each inspection.”

During the first inspection on December 21, 2017 — which the SLA said was triggered by prior incidents at the club — the SLA says that officers from the 72nd Precinct discovered nine customers with illegal drugs, including seven who were seen with vials containing a controlled substance in their possession and another two who had drug residue on their noses; all were arrested.

A little over a week later, on January 1, 2018, cops revisited the club and again arrested nine customers who were found to be in possession of Ketamine, according to the SLA. On this occasion, club personnel, said the SLA, tried to give patrons in closed karaoke rooms notice that the police — who confiscated four glass vials, two pipes and three plastic straws containing what turned out to be Ketamine residue — were on site.

The cops were back at the club again on January 19, when they arrested an additional eight club customers for drug possession. On this occasion, again, club staff attempted to warn customers of the arrival of the police, according to the SLA. Six vials collected by cops on this occasion also tested positive for Ketamine, said the SLA.

The following day, January 20, the police returned to the club after being alerted to an assault going on there which turned out to be an argument between two employees that turned physical when one of the pair kicked the other in the leg.

The series of incidents led SLA to charge DC KTV on February 5 with eight violations of the consolidated alcoholic beverage control laws of New York State (ABC Law). These include five occasions of disorderly premises within a period of five months, as well as becoming a focal point for police attention.

DC KTV had previously been fined $20,000 on September 13, 2017, after being charged with more than five counts of disorderly premises since 2016.

The suspension of the club’s liquor license came as no surprise to one resident contacted by this paper. “I know there were concerns — with a capital C — about these places,” the source said.

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