Updated: Sunday, 09 May 2010, 11:33 PM MDT
Published : Sunday, 09 May 2010, 11:33 PM MDT
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A shooting at an underage Albuquerque nightclub, early Sunday morning, has neighbors concerned their worst fears have become reality.
Residents, who live near UV Nightclub, on Central Avenue near Washington Street, never wanted the underage club to open. It's been a little over a month after the club’s grand opening and police are now investigating a shooting that took place right outside.
Albuquerque police said officers were called to the club around 2 a.m., Sunday. When they arrived officer found out that a fight had broken out in the alley behind the club and a man, 26, was rushed to the hospital.
“The shooter was seen leaving in a gray newer model ford pickup,” Albuquerque Public Safety Department Spokesman T.J. Wilham said.
Wilham said the man was shot in the arm at least once. James Prasek was across the street when the shooting started. He said he heard a lot more than one shot.
“One shot rang out over in the alley there and then five other shots,” Prasek said.
Prasek said the shooting is exactly what neighbors were worried about. However, after he found out the age of the shooting victim his concerns grew.
“Allowing individuals that are over 21 to come in when they are having a 16 plus party,” Prasek said.
The club had advertised the 16 plus party on flyers and on their website. KRQE News 13 called the owner, Jon Chavez, and asked about the younger teens mingling with those over 21 and he said it does happen.
“I guess we make a judgment at the door,” Chavez said. “Sometimes a 20 year old is friends with a 21 year old. We're not going to say that they both can’t come in together.”
However, Chavez said those over 21 are only allowed inside if they're not intoxicated.
The city said it has no control over that issue because the club does not sell booze.
“Whether or not they could have 16, 13 years olds, anyone underage is something between their insurance carrier,” Wilham said.
Prasek said while the club is not licensed to serve booze he has seen people drinking outside.
“I knew this was going to happen,” Prasek said. “We have not learned a lesson from this. Time and time again this happens, every single time with these underage businesses.”
Chavez said they have not seen any drinking on their premises. As for the shooting, he said he does not know if the men in the fight were at the club earlier and that bouncers did not recognize any of them.
City officials had to delay the opening of the UV Nightclub because of a string of failed fire and planning inspections. Those issues were all fixed.
The owners turned the club into a member's club after the city rejected a request for a public dancing permit.