COLUMBUS, Ohio — Editor's Note: The above video aired on November 19, 2020
Agents with the Ohio Investigative Unit are yet again cracking down on businesses violating the rules put in place the slow the spread of the Coronavirus in Ohio.
On Friday, agents cited three Ohio businesses, all of which are liquor permit holding businesses, for violating state health orders.
Included in the list are two Northeast Ohio businesses.
The cases will make their way to the Ohio Liquor Control Commissions for any potential penalties, including fines and/or having their liquor permits suspended or revoked.
The establishments involved are:
Gray Area Bistro, Cleveland, received a citation for improper conduct - disorderly activity and hindering or obstructing inspection. At approximately 8:40 p.m., agents, Cleveland Division of Police, Cleveland Division of Fire and the Cleveland Department of Public Health observed a large number of patrons inside the premises. Approximately 130 patrons were crammed into the establishment, shoulder to shoulder throughout. Patrons were closely congregated, standing and moving freely throughout while consuming alcoholic beverages. No social distancing measures were in place or being enforced by staff. Due to the amount of people, it was difficult for public safety personnel to move without having direct physical contact.
Lounge 2.28, Bedford, received a citation for improper conduct - disorderly activity and hindering inspection. At approximately 9:15 p.m., agents and officers with the Bedford Police Department observed approximately 50 patrons closely congregated, standing and walking freely about the establishment while consuming alcoholic beverages. Numerous patrons and bar staff were not wearing masks and no safety measures were in use.
Top Dog Saloon, Fairborn, received a citation for after hours sale - Rule 80. After receiving a complaint, agents ordered two bottles of beer at 10:20 p.m. The bartender opened and served the agents two beers. Two other patrons who were inside the bar, left the permit premises following agents identifying themselves.
The Ohio Investigative Unit consists of fully-sworn, plainclothes peace officers who enforce Ohio's alcohol, tobacco and food stamp fraud laws. The agents conduct liquor license compliance checks, as well as providing safety checks regarding the state's COVID-19 directives.
Editor's Note: The below video aired on November 19, 2020