City Desk

Might Court Keep DC9 Closed?

Roger Gordon says he's going after DC9. The activist, who has been on hand throughout the controversy that emerged when 27-year-old Ali Ahmed Mohammed died outside the popular hangout, has filed an appeal with the D.C. Court of Appeals of the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) decision that allows the nightclub to reopen today.

Gordon, who refers to himself a community organizer, has filed a petition for review that suggests the club is a danger to the community despite new security measures and protocols. ABRA policy indicates such a move is possible. A "party adversely affected" by an order has the right to appeal it by filing a petition for review, within 30 days of the decision.

Gordon's filing contends Mohammed was beaten by DC9 employees and that the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board jumped the gun by lifting a suspension of the club's liquor license.

"Members of the Ethiopian American community and others, including Petitioner, have been warning Respondent for two months—through the media, through protests, and sometimes directly—that DC9 poses a threat to their health and safety," Gordon's filing says.

Gordon doesn't just want the court to take a look at the board's decision; he's asked for an injunction to keep the club closed. ABRA spokeswoman Cynthia Simms says ABRA may respond to Gordon's motion with an opposing one. She also says a judge could rule on the motion sooner than later, but expects DC9's opening will go on as planned. DC9's lawyers haven't responded yet to a request for comment.

Update: The court has denied Gordon's motion. ABRA submitted an opposing motion defending its decision and contending that Gordon doesn't have the standing to submit the petition, as he's not directly involved in the bar or the incident. Gordon has 20 days to "show cause why his petition for review should not be dismissed."

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  • Rick Mangus

    This is all bullshit, from MPD, to the U.S. Attorneys Office, to ABRA, to the Office of the Chief Medicial Examiner! How is it that ALL four of these agencies are incompetent or is there something more going on here!

    Rend Smith, you need to find out why the M.E.'s office is foot dragging on the cause of death and why the charges were dropped, because this whole thing stinks!

  • Another David

    Members of the Ethiopian American community and others, including Petitioner, have been warning Respondent for two months ... that DC9 poses a threat to their health and safety.

    Are you serious? Is he actually trying to turn this into a racial issue?

    Look, I want justice for Ali just as much as the next person, but without any charges and no real, solid evidence to begin with, what choice does the ABRA have? The club owners weren't even around at the time of the incident. They've lost a lot of money and will continue to do so for many months following this. Why keep punishing a group of people who, at least on paper, aren't actually guilty of anything?

  • Ward One Resident

    Based on some of the comments I've overheard at the ABC hearings and some of the rhetoric being bandied about, I would argue that DC9, it's employees, owners and patrons right now are more under threat than any percieved threat that Mr. Gordon claims.

  • Typical DC BS

    Roger Gordon needs to crawl back under the rock he came from or go back on his meds. Another DC resident who thinks some event he isn't involved in requires that he be accomodated for some mysterious slight to him that only he recognizes. Next thing you know, he'll be suing for mental distress over the incident.

  • Ha

    These comments are dead on...You have NO IDEA how right you are...