CLEVELAND — Agents from the Ohio Investigative Unit (OIU) and officers from the Cleveland Division of Police are investigating after two establishments were caught illegally selling alcohol without a liquor permit while failing to adhere to the state’s COVID-19 health orders.
On Friday, agents and officers arrived at around 12:45 a.m. to a business property on Prospect Avenue in Cleveland where there were more than 100 vehicles in the parking lot.
According to investigators, patrons purchased tickets for $20, which covered entry and alcoholic beverage purchases.
Agents observed several hundred people inside the business, standing shoulder-to-shoulder, disregarding social distancing protocols and facial covering mandates.
The business did not have a valid liquor license. Criminal charges are pending for illegal sales, OIU said.
Agents also are investigating Ankor Restaurant & Ultra Lounge in Cleveland where agents discovered it was operating without a liquor license.
At around 11:15 p.m., agents observed approximately 40 patrons consuming alcohol with a full service bar. Criminal charges for illegal sales are pending, OIU said.
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Two other businesses in Northeast Ohio were also cited Friday.
Agents responded to Kepner’s Restaurant in Hudson around 10:20 p.m. and about 25 patrons were seen consuming alcohol and openly congregating with no social distancing. No one was wearing a face mask, according to OIU.
In Canton at Musical Inn around 1:20 a.m., agents observed approximately 50 patrons consuming alcohol, standing elbow-to-elbow and congregating throughout the bar.
Investigators determined suspected narcotics were found behind the bar.
Musical Inn was cited for improper conduct-disorderly conduct and improper conduct-drug possession.
The Ohio Investigative Unit is made up of plainclothes peace officers who enforce Ohio’s alcohol, tobacco and foot stamp fraud laws. Agents also investigate complaints of illegal activity on liquor permit premises.