License Commission Places Westgate Bar on Probation After Stabbing

Attorney Joseph C. Edwards, chairman of the Haverhill License Commission.

Attorney Joseph C. Edwards, chairman of the Haverhill License Commission.

A stabbing incident late last fall outside Oriental Gardens at Westgate Center led the Haverhill License Commission to place the restaurant and bar on probation for over serving liquor.

Commissioners told Oriental Gardens Manager Ivan Yee his business would be forced to close two days if there are any other charges during the next six months. During the incident last November, Haverhill Police Detective Carlos Arriaga testified, a patron “suffered three substantial stab wounds to the back and left shoulder.”

“There were large amounts of blood splattered on the sidewalk as well as clothing strewn about the area,” according to police reports. Arriaga said the fight began as an argument inside the bar, but escalated into a fight outside just after last call. Police arrested Kevin P. Stephan and charged him with assault with intent to murder and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon. Stephan’s girlfriend, Maureen McLaughlin, was also charged with assault with a dangerous weapon. Witnesses said McLaughlin got hold of the weapon after the stabbing and was “wildly swinging the knife at anyone and everyone that got near her,” police reported.

Yee told commissioners he fired the restaurant’s doorman and added outdoor security cameras as a result of the incident. Commission Chairman Joseph C. Edwards also asked Yee to begin serving liquor in plastic containers after 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday. Commissioner Tim Coco proposed the six-month probationary period and Commissioner Gerald Sewell supported his motion.

Commissioners also imposed six months of probation for two package store licensees who were caught selling to minors during a police “sting” operation in May. The penalties were imposed on 7-Eleven, 503 River St., and Harry’s Liquors, 239 Lincoln Ave. Both had previously been charged with selling to underage people.

Commissioners took no action against two other establishments, accused by police of selling to minors, because of their good compliance records.

3 thoughts on “License Commission Places Westgate Bar on Probation After Stabbing

  1. Why is it always the establishments fault ? Every time there is a fight, they blame the business as if they purposely started it. People do drink at many other places at times and end up at one where they start trouble. Keep shutting them down and soon, nobody will want to be here !