Rathskeller Loses Liquor License

By Darren Dodge

Rathskeller Loses Liquor License

April 13, 2011 Updated Apr 14, 2011 at 3:22 PM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The Rathskeller bar has lost its liquor license after an emergency action by the New York State Liquor Authority for repeated violations.

The Liquor Authority suspended the license of New Rat, LLC., which was doing business as “The Rathskeller” at 92-94 State Street in Binghamton.

The SLA took the action at its meeting on Wednesday.

The Rathskeller cannot serve alcohol, nor can alcohol be consumed on the premises indefinitely.

The Rathskeller owners will now have the opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty to the charges.

The SLA says the most disturbing incident that led to the emergency action was on January 27, 2011, when the Binghamton Police Department conducted a random inspection.

Undercover officers saw dozens of underage customers inside the bar.

When other officers tried to enter the bar, the owners ordered the DJ to announce a false fire to get everyone out of the bar quickly.

This owner later admitted to SLA investigators that he called for the fake alarm because he had violations in the past for serving minors and didn't want to get busted again.

The Rathskeller was charged with creating a disorderly premises following this incident, as well as improper conduct and lack of supervision.

On February 26, SLA investigators and Binghamton Police officers saw a 19 year old with a drink she had bought with a fake driver's license.

The bouncers working were also found to be unlicensed.

The bar was charged with selling to a minor, hiring unlicensed security and lack of supervision.

And again on April 1, officers and SLA investigators saw three underage customers buy and drink alcohol in the bar.

The same two unlicensed bouncers were working security, and three other minors were in the 21 and over bar that night.

The SLA says the bar showed "disdain for the law by blatantly catering to minors, but worse still in fabricating an emergency they showed they would go to any length to not get caught, including jeopardizing the health and safety of their young patrons,” said SLA CEO Trina Mead. “The SLA will not tolerate these illegal, flagrant and dangerous violations.”

The Rathskeller has a history of violations, including a $3,500 fine for failure to supervise the premises, $5,000 in March for purchasing from an unauthorized source, sale for consumption off the premises and for maintaining inadequate books and records.

The SLA law allows the board to take emergency action when a bar is a risk to public health, safety, or welfare.

The Rathskeller owners may now ask for an expedited hearing before an administrative law judge.

The revocation of the liquor license is in place until the hearing and decision from the court.