Two people fired “probably” more than 22 shots outside a late-night dance club last week, with no injuries or arrests reported, the police chief confirmed Wednesday.
It happened at 2 a.m. Friday at Sideways Sports Bar and Grill on Lameuse Street at the corner of Water Street.
The club has found itself at odds with police in the past. The Biloxi Police Department filed a lawsuit against the club a year ago, calling the bar a public nuisance because of its customers’ behavior. The lawsuit has not been resolved.
The city is amending its lawsuit to include the shooting, Biloxi spokesman Vincent Creel said Wednesday.
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The city’s legal staff had been working toward a judgment against Sideways, but the club’s attorney, Sean Tindell, was appointed to be a judge on the Mississippi Court of Appeals, causing further delays, Creel said.
The bar manager is Pass Christian resident Brandi Favre, sister of former Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre and a Pro Football Hall of Fame member. There’s also a Sideways Sports Bar in Bay St. Louis.
Brandi Favre could not be reached for comment.
The club, which has a Creole-style porch with wrought iron railings, is on the second floor of a renovated building above Fuji Sushi House. It’s next door to Half Shell Oyster House and just south of City Hall.
The building is owned by architect and planner Walter “Buzzy” Bolton and his wife, real estate agent Laura Bolton.
In the lawsuit, police officials seek to revoke the bar’s business license until a permanent injunction is issued requiring the business to prevent its patrons from violating city codes and ordinances inside and outside its premises.
Police also want a permanent injunction to require the business to post a bond to insure its customers don’t break the law or otherwise endanger others.
The police department did not issue a press release after last week’s shooting.
“It’s not something we would put a press release out on unless there was a regular shooting,” Police Chief John Miller said. “We think it was two different people shooting. Nobody was hurt.”
The shooting is under investigation, but a felony charge would not apply to the circumstances based on what police know right now, Miller said. The most likely charge would be discharging a firearm in the city. That’s a misdemeanor.
“The business has an obligation to make sure its clientele is behaving. There’s plenty of security there,” Miller said.
“I don’t want to blame the business completely.”
Sometimes people, for whatever reason, decide to shoot a gun without intending to hurt anyone, but it’s against the law inside city limits, he said.
“There’s a remedy,” Miller said. “You can call the police.”
Sideways of Biloxi is a member in good standing with the Secretary of State’s Office since March 23, 2015, the state website shows.
The website has a sealed document under the business name that says “notice to dissolve/revoke” dated Sept. 6, 2016.
The lawsuit alleges 133 complaints of behavior at the bar between July 13, 2016, and Nov. 30, 2016, were called in by citizens. Those complaints resulted in 42 offense reports and arrests on 43 charges.
There were “large fights, assaults, discharging of firearms, disturbing the peace,” lawsuit said. Other crimes included simple assault, disorderly conduct, public drunk, possession of marijuana and driving under the influence.
Stray bullets that killed or wounded children have made recent headlines nationwide.
A 2-year-old boy died Friday night when a stray bullet struck him as he tried to learn to ride a bicycle in a South Miami-Dade neighborhood, according to the Miami Herald.
A boy, 9, was injured on New Year’s Even when a stray bullet struck him during celebratory gunfire while he watched midnight fireworks in South Los Angeles, CBS Los Angeles reports. The bullet grazed him.
SunHerald.com is working on an updated report.