Club Crave shuttered after latest shooting - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Club Crave shuttered after latest shooting

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

Three days after a deadly triple shooting at Club Crave on Beale Street, city officials ordered it closed, and they hope for good.

Chains were placed on the club's doors as well as a nuisance sign Thursday afternoon.

Mayor A C Wharton has called for the club to be demolished as soon as possible.

After years of almost constant crime at Club Crave, it was a Christmas Eve homicide that became the final straw for the Beale Street night club.

MORE: 1 dead, 4 wounded at 2 Memphis nightclubs
MORE: Club Crave building on Beale has lengthy history of violence


Together with the city and the police department, the city attorney's office shut down Club Crave as a nuisance.

"For some reason, this location, just has problems," said Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich during the joint news conference. "The community deserves better and all of us lined up here today are sick and tired of it."

The Christmas Eve homicide was just the last offense in a long investigation for the police department. Three people were shot and one person was trampled as patrons were exiting the  Fourth and Beale Street club at around 3:15 a.m.

Memphis rapper Yo Gotti was performing at Club Crave Sunday evening but it is not clear the shootings were in connection to his performance.

In a news conference Thursday afternoon, Police Director Toney Armstrong said an investigation into Club Crave started in June 2011.

In the past year and a half more than 175 people were arrested for offenses ranging from assault to robbery, drug-related offenses. Police are searching for the person or persons who shot and killed Randy Williams, 24.

"Any night this club is open we're responding to calls here," Director Armstrong said. "Most recently, the homicide that occurred here. We've done all we an do. There is nothing for us to do but to close this location."

Mayor Wharton wants the club, that is on private property, to be torn down. The city will go to court and file a condemnation petition. This would mean the city would have to condemn the property, then buy it from the current owners, and then tear it down.

"(A condemnation petition) which basically means we tear down this place," Mayor Wharton said. "So we don't have to worry about injunctions, we're going to just destroy this place."

Several Beale Street merchants attended the news conference. Some New Daisy Theatre employees said times have been tough on Beale Street, and having a crime-ridden club just down from them has not helped the reputation or business on Beale.

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FOX13 News reporter Lauren Lee contributed to this report.

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