By Jeff Todd
DENVER (CBS4) – Using a rarely enforced municipal code, the City of Denver has shut down a bar at 27th and Larimer Street, saying it’s a public health risk.
The Cold Crush has a “Denver Public Nuisance” notice posted on its front door. A homicide investigation is underway for a shooting outside the bar early Monday morning.
“There’s always drama, especially on Sunday nights. Sometimes I can’t even get to my property to park,” said Steve Gonzalez who lives nearby. “It’s just terrible down here, even with the police down here.”
Several people told CBS4 off-duty officers are hired as security at the bar that emphasizes art and music.
“I know that I can come to cold crush and find people that appreciate diversity and social justice, and equity and want to do something together. To hear it was closed, it’s heartbreaking,” said Lainie Hodges, who considers the Cold Crush a second home.
The owners of the bar didn’t respond to CBS4’s response for comment.
The city says there are now two paths it could go down. One would be filing a public nuisance case through the city attorney’s office in court within the next 10 days.
The liquor license has been suspended and the licensing department within the city has 15 days to investigate before proceeding forward.
For now, the Cold Crush is closed.
A city spokesperson said the public nuisance law is rarely applied in the city, but said the Cold Crush is being investigated for “disruptive and illegal activities.”
“I think there is a sense that there might be some targeting going on because it’s a black-owned business and there tend to be black patrons here,” said Hodges.
“We are interested in working with people to make this work for everyone because this will be a huge loss to the community if we don’t have Cold Crush anymore.”
Jeff Todd joined the CBS4 team in 2011 covering the Western Slope in the Mountain Newsroom. Since 2015 he’s been working across the Front Range in the Denver Headquarters. Follow him on Twitter @CBS4Jeff.