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Feb. 1 – Own Time Sports surrenders Alcohol License ahead of 'Show Cause' Hearing; Video made public of shooting and drug deal

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

February 1. 2018 - Own Time Sports and Comedy Grill owner Gregory Webb surrendered his Alcoholic Beverage License to the City of Savannah this week, ahead of what was destined to be a somewhat stressful City Council discussion over pulling his liquor license.  The club is located across the street from Savannah State University at 4429 Skidaway Road, virtually the only place students can access by foot for food and entertainment.

Webb submitted a handwritten note to the City’s Revenue Office yesterday afternoon, just one day before the City planned to hold a Show Cause Hearing highlighting the establishment’s problematic business practices, including criminal activity that has taken place inside the bar.  To remove any appearance of harsh treatment, video obtained by the police department and city’s alcohol enforcement officers was shown to the Council, showing the lead up to a shooting, the alleged tampering with evidence by bar owners and employees, the lack of calls to the police department about the shooting, and then a drug transaction going on in the grill’s kitchen as food was being prepared. Prior Council hearings have been held when a shooting took place behind the bar in 2016. 

During Thursday’s City Council meeting, Mayor Eddie DeLoach asked the City Attorney’s Office to discuss the problems with Own Time, insuring the evidence associated with the Own Time Sports and Comedy Grill incidents became part of the public record.  And Alderman Tony Thomas asked how the city could prevent the Webb could be prevented from applying for a liquor license in the future? 

Deputy City Attorney Jen Herman, and Savannah Police Sergeant Shinita Young with the department’s Alcohol Beverage and Compliance Unit, showed four clips of surveillance video from inside Own Time the night of Mon., Jan. 1, 2018.  Herman told Council the video allegedly shows illegally activity linked to nine City ordinance violations and three state law violations.

The first clip shows a fight that starts in the restroom in a back area of the building.  The second clip shows the flight spilling over into the main room near the pool tables. After a few minutes gunshots are fired, and a man is shot. His mother attended the Council meeting, and spoke about what her son has endured in medical issues since the event.

The third clip is after the fight and gunfire; it shows employees walking though the bar.  Employees picks up shell casings and the owner, Webb, appears to puts the evidence in his pocket. 

Herman called this tampering with a crime scene and altering evidence, and said no one associated with Own Time called 911 to report the shooting.  Savannah Police Chief Mark Revenew said officers had to knock down the door to gain entry. The fourth clip is from the kitchen of Own Time.  It shows a drug transaction taking place. 

The mother of the 24-year-old man who was shot at Own Time said her son was in the hospital for weeks, shot twice in his stomach, and has ongoing medical issues.

The video clips can be found on the City’s website at http://ga-savannah2.civicplus.com/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1755

A copy of Webb’s handwritten letter is attached to this email. Webb’s Alcoholic Beverage License, and Close of Business documents are also attached on the city’s Agenda for today’s meeting.   

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