BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — A brawl that broke out on Chippewa and ended in shots being fired has one local business re-evaluating the ability to host large, late-night events.
Matthew Krupp, general manager of The Lodge, penned a letter to the people of Buffalo on Tuesday announcing the business will no longer be hosting late-night events past 2 a.m. after a late-night DJ event that ran through 3 a.m. on Sunday night ended in violence.
Officials say a fight, or a series of fights, broke out on Chippewa Street near The Lodge as patrons exited the event. Eventually, shots were fired, leading to a chaotic scene with police searching the area with guns drawn.
One person, later identified as Keenan Fitzgerald, faced arrest and charges related to the fight, in which police say one person suffered minor injuries.
Krupp said The Lodge is committed to safety and detailed the security hired on the night of the fight, saying 15 security personnel were hired to stand guard inside the bar, with more stationed outside. Krupp also said they requested presence from the Buffalo Police, but noted recent changes in Buffalo Police policy didn’t allow the requested help.
Due to the changes in policy, The Lodge’s general manager announced his concern for safety of patrons following large events.
“Violence is an issue that isn’t going away unless we fight it, that is why we want to commit to working with city and community leaders to establish initiatives that empower responsible members of the community to combat violence through education, communication, and community involvement,” Krupp said.
However Krupp noted the violence that broke out is rare, never having happened following the monthly DJ event before. He said the violence can’t be blamed on one group of people, or one part of the city.
“It isn’t a east side or west side problem, a north Buffalo or south Buffalo problem, or a Chippewa, Allen or Elmwood problem, it is a community problem,” Krupp wrote.
Many patrons say they do feel safe in the area, however investigation into the brawl continues.