The owner of Twist Ultra Lounge and Dance in Syracuse says he's upset by "the unruly acts of non-Twist customers" over the weekend. Joshua Jones tells CNYcentral's Michael Benny, "We don't know who they are because we've never seen them before."
A brawl at the establishment on West Genesee Street last Saturday evening left four people with stab wounds and saw several arrests.
As a result of the violence, Twist will be closed through the end of this week. "I made an executive decision to close for this week and work with the police department to find out where this unscrupulous group of people came from and what other safety measures we can take to prevent anything like this from happening again," Jones said. He added, "The police department showed an amazing response to defuse the situation."
As a result of the violence, some families revisiting Syracuse are reconsidering future trips. "Maybe we'll rethink it if it's after dark, especially with a family" said David Keller of Rochester, visiting Syracuse on Monday with his family. "So, could be dealbreaker next time."
"In the daytime, I'm not too freaked out because it seems pretty safe with a lot of traffic, and it seems like an okay area," said J.J. Pearsall, visiting Syracuse for the day from Albany. "At night, I know things can get a little shady, and it's a pretty big deal."
One man who has been to Twist Lounge on several locations believes more security could help prevent future problems.
"Maybe more security, maybe wanding," said Joshua Richardson of Syracuse. "If you pat people down before they get in there, make sure they don't have any weapons on them, that would probably be the best bet. Because if you go to Karma or any of the other clubs, people know you're not going to get in with a knife in there."
Next door to Twist Lounge, Matt Fitzwater works as an autodetailing specialist at Walt's Automotive Service and has had no problems with Twist or its owner. "The owner, he's a very good guy to handle and to deal with and to work next to," said Fitzwater. "We're open during the day and the Twist is open in the evening, so we don't have a lot of conflict that way."
Twist Lounge has seen multiple fights and disturbances over the last few months. The Syracuse Police Department is now asking for a review from the New York State Liquor Authority because of several violations.