Janesville police hope sanctions will change 'culture of violence' at Quotes
JANESVILLE Janesville Police Chief Dave Moore hopes sanctions announced Friday will change “the culture of violence” at Quotes Bar & Grill.
The tavern will be open this weekend but will close for a week beginning Monday as part of an agreement with the chief.
The bar, located at 24 N. Main St., also will close earlier than bar time for the next four months.
“The police department hopes that these sanctions will interrupt the culture of violence that has persisted at Quotes,” Moore said in releasing details of the settlement.
Quotes has a long history of friction with the police department, including fights at the bar—one of which left a young man in a coma. More recently, the State Crime Lab determined a security video of a fight there was erased. Days later, owner Denise Carpenter was cited for selling beer after hours.
“Certainly, the destruction of the video and her sale of beer out the back door after hours did not indicate a healthy, cooperative effort,” Moore said.
The city’s alcohol license advisory committee July 3 recommended the bar be closed for a week and then close at 12:30 a.m. for 90 days and at 1:30 a.m. for 90 days.
Normal closing time is 2:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday and 2 a.m. other days of the week.
Lawyers for Quotes and the chief have been negotiating since July 3 in hopes of avoiding a revocation hearing.
“The problems that have occurred at Quotes have occurred over many years, and the police department has tried to work with Quotes to correct the problem but were unable to do so,” Moore said. “That has resulted in the sanctions and settlement agreement.
“It is the desire of the department that Quotes operate a successful, orderly and lawful business,” Moore said.
Deputy Chief Dan Davis has said Quotes is responsible for 30 percent of the police resources spent at 43 of the city’s licensed bars.
Carpenter, reached Friday, declined to comment.
The bar agreed to close:
-- For a week beginning Monday.
-- At 12:30 a.m. for 60 days, from Monday, Aug. 6, through Saturday, Oct. 6.
-- At 1 a.m. for 60 days, from Sunday, Oct. 7, through Thursday, Dec. 6.
Moore said at least one bar owner is worried that the Quotes crowd will move to other downtown bars when Quotes closes early.
“We acknowledge that after the suspension period and with the early closing times, this could have an adverse effect on other alcohol establishment in the downtown area,” Moore said.
“The police department will work closely with the other taverns to assure that those problems don’t just simply move to another bar … That certainly could be a possibility.”
Moore said Carpenter’s attorney told him Carpenter has made substantial changes at the bar, including a new dress code.
“His understanding is that, since the changes have been implemented, there have not been any problems at the bar,” Moore said.
Moore agreed there have been no issues the last couple of weeks.