Walnut Creek Has a Drunken Brawl Problem, May Crack Down on Liquor Licenses
Little did we understand, but Walnut Creek is a hub of late-night boozing for the easternmost East Bay, and this past weekend saw three more in a series of chaotic, post-2 a.m. incidents that have the city council on edge. Two incidents of violence and grandstanding by inebriated groups outside late-night eateries early Sunday morning, as well as an assault in the garage above the Lark Creek Restaurant that left one man seriously injured, has led to new talk by city leaders about trying wrest control of liquor licenses away from the state. As ABC 7 reports, bar owners are running scared now and held a little pow-wow to discuss the matter. "The nightlife is a big draw to the city and we don't want that to go away," says Crogan's bar owner Patsy Wilkinson.
The Chronicle clarifies that this was actually the second incident of weekend violence this month, with the first occuring January 7 outside Shiro Lounge.
"These types of [incidents] are occurring more than they have in the past," says police chief Joel Bryden. He's asking the city council to approve two new police hires to cover downtown beats, and in the meantime police presence in the downtown will be stepped up this weekend. The city council is threatening to cut back operating hours at certain bars, but in order to do so they need to get local control of liquor-license issuing and enforcement.
Now we feel bad for mocking Walnut Creek when a similar night of chaos played out last January, and was caught on cell-phone video. But they threatened a crackdown then, a year ago, and it doesn't sound like they did much since.
Bar owners express solidarity over bar fights [ABC 7]
Drunken brawls raise concern in Walnut Creek [Chron]
Earlier: Walnut Creek Sees Night of Violent Fights
It Is Just Not Cool to Be Drunk and Disorderly in Downtown Walnut Creek