Businesses, patrons react to deadly Sunday morning shooting

By: Lanetra Bennett | WCTV Eyewitness News
February 12, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Tallahassee Police are still looking for a suspect who killed one man and and injured another in a shooting on West Tennessee Street early Sunday morning.

People in the area are complaining about the rowdy late night crowd. In the past few months, the Tallahassee Police Department has responded to more than 20 calls in the shopping plaza where the shooting happened, ranging from loud noise to disorderly conduct to aggravated assault.

Keshia Ritchie was working at Bottom's Up Bar late Saturday night. She says she decided to lock the front doors early because things outside were getting too hectic. It was 1:26 a.m., she says.

"Three or four minutes later, you hear gunshots. It was about six of them," Ritchie recalled. "My friend was actually in here with me. He said, 'Somebody's knocking on the door.' I was like, 'No, that was gunshots.' Everybody outside, they're laughing. Somebody just got shot and these people are out here laughing. I mean, there's still cars pulling up."

Bar patrons say there are always cars pulling up late at night, going to the Shisha Hookah bar next door.

"This whole parking lot fills up front, back, sideways, spills over into this area," explained Tallahassee resident Nancy Cargell. "People are out here drinking out of liquor bottles, doing other things. They're throwing beer bottles, spitting at people, things like that."

Cargell says she'd been afraid things would escalate.

Kendrick Ardley says he knows the victim who survived. He found out about the shooting from his brother.

"We both just dropped our head and said a prayer. We just hope that Nario gets justice,"Ardley said. "I come over here and shoot pool all the time. To hear the tragedy happened, especially to a good friend of mine, that's real sad."

The owners of Shisha Hooka Bar say the safety of their patrons and the area is very important and they have security to try to keep everyone as safe as possible.

"We have security and more police, too, to make sure there's no crowd outside and make sure everyone's inside having fun and keep the crowd less," said Hesham Binmahfooz, one of the owners of Shisha Cafe.

Surrounding business owners say the hookah bar moved to their current location about two and a half months ago.

"My customers don't come in here. This is an old-timey bar. Who's going to feel comfortable?" Ritchie said. "People working don't feel comfortable. We've already lost a bartender because she's scared to work here. We're not making no money and it's all because of what's going on next door."

TPD has not released the names of the victims, and there's no word on a suspect at this time.



 
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