OHIO, USA — While the state of Ohio continues its rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, agents with Ohio's Investigative Unit continue to patrol businesses in an effort to enforce health orders put in place in order to slow the spread of the disease.
On Friday, six businesses were cited for violating state COVID-19 health orders, including two in Northeast Ohio.
Kepner’s Restaurant, Hudson, received a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity. Agents entered the establishment at 10:20 p.m. and observed approximately 25 patrons consuming alcohol and openly congregating with no social distancing. No one was observed wearing a facial covering.
Musical Inn, Canton, received a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity and improper conduct– drug possession. Agents visited the establishment at 1:20 a.m. and observed approximately 50 patrons consuming alcohol, standing elbow-to-elbow and congregating throughout the premises. During the investigation suspected narcotics were recovered behind the bar.
The remaining for citations were issued in Chillicothe, Steubenville, New Philadelphia, and Rayland.
Wagner’s Roadhouse, Chillicothe, received a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity and insanitary conditions. Agents arrived at 9:20 p.m. and observed more than 25 patrons in the bar area crowded shoulder-to-shoulder with no social distancing. Throughout the bar, agents estimate approximately 60 patrons. Few patrons and staff were seen wearing facial coverings, and those who were wore them improperly. Multiple patrons were standing while consuming alcoholic beverages, dancing and intermingling with other crowded social groups inside the bar. The Ross County Sheriff’s Office assisted agents.
Enzo’s, Steubenville, received a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity. Agents visited the establishment at 10:40 p.m. and observed eight patrons openly consuming alcohol.
D Kay’s Bar and Grill, New Philadelphia, received a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity. Agents visited the establishment at 12:10 a.m. and observed six patrons consuming alcohol and moving freely throughout the premises.
Third Base, Rayland, received a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity and furnishing beer or intoxicating liquor to an intoxicated person. This citation is the result of a case submitted to the agents by the Wells Township Police Department. On December 26, a fight involving intoxicated individuals took place at 1:30 a.m. at the establishment.
The cases now go before the Ohio Liquor Commission, where the bars could potentially face fines or have their liquor licenses suspended or revoked.
In addition to the citations, agents worked with the Cleveland Division of Police to crack down on businesses without liquor licenses.
Ankor Restaurant & Ultra Lounge, Cleveland, at 11:15 p.m. Upon arrival, agents determined this location does not have a valid liquor permit. Inside the location, approximately 40 patrons were consuming alcohol with full bar service. Criminal charges are pending for illegal sales.
Agents and officers also investigated a business property on Prospect Avenue in Cleveland. At 12:45 a.m., agents and officers observed more than 100 vehicles in the parking lot. Patrons purchased tickets for $20, which covered their entry and alcoholic beverage purchases. Several hundred people were inside the business, shoulder-to-shoulder, with an absence of social distancing and facial coverings. This location does not have a valid liquor license. Criminal charges are pending for illegal sales.