PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Allegheny County officials have shut down a South Side bar after police responded to numerous altercations over the past few months, including a recent stabbing.
Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala announced Friday that he would be closing “Levelz Sports Lounge” on East Carson Street.
Folks like school teacher Anna Tarka-Dinunzio, who lives and works on the South Side, couldn’t be happier.
“We have families down here and we don’t want businesses like this that are not going to be safe for our families and our children,” Tarka-Dinunzio said.
Police records indicate 33 incidents at the bar in the last two years, including a stabbing a few weeks ago and another incident described as a rap feud – 30 people fighting.
“This is important to everyone who either comes to Carson Street, lives in the South Side or does a responsible business on the street,” said City Councilman Bruce Kraus.
This is Kraus’s district. He’s fought to shut Levelz down for years, and fought harder to clean up the South Side.
“There’s a disruptive element, clearly, that’s impacting the quality of life of people that live here and for responsible businesses to operate their businesses responsibly,” said Kraus.
Employees stopped by Levelz Friday to pick up some of their belongings; they had nothing to say.
However, a lawyer representing the bar says they will work to try to reopen, and says many of the crimes reported there, didn’t actually happen there.
Meanwhile, Zappala says a meeting with the owner of Levelz to prevent court action was unsuccessful.
“Throughout the course of my administration, I have always held the position that quality of life and public safety are paramount when dealing with the operation of drinking establishments,” said Zappala in a statement. “The vast majority of residents and business owners on the South Side are responsible individuals who are proud of their neighborhood and I appreciate the input they gave my office leading up to today.”
Zappala says the DA’s office aims to permanently close down the bar and transfer the liquor license to “an unrelated person or entity.”