After woman killed in Friday night shootout, some Chinatown residents call for closure of karaoke bar

A petition organized the Coalition For A Better Chinese American Community and Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th) will ask the city next week to revoke licenses for No. 18 Karaoke Bar.

SHARE After woman killed in Friday night shootout, some Chinatown residents call for closure of karaoke bar
Chicago police offices at work Friday night near where 3 people were shot when two gunmen exchanged fire near Cermak Road Wentworth Avenue in Chinatown.

Chicago police offices at work Friday night near where 3 people were shot when two gunmen exchanged fire near Cermak Road Wentworth Avenue in Chinatown.

Tyler Pasciak LaRiviere/Sun-Times

After a shootout between two people left a woman dead Friday night in Chinatown, some residents of the South Side community say they want a nearby karaoke bar declared a public nuisance.

Area residents told the Sun-Times the No. 18 Karaoke Bar has a poor track record of attracting crime and they are collecting signatures to demand the city close it down.

The bar, located on the second floor of a building at 2201 S. Wentworth Ave., has “failed to take reasonable steps to correct objectionable conditions existing or occurring while the business was open or within one hour of it being opened or closed for business,” a petition that the residents were circulating claimed.

The petition said that in the last 12 months, several “illegal acts” have occurred on its premises or nearby, including public indecency, vandalism and two shootings — most recently the one on Friday night.

“We demand that No. 18 Karaoke Bar have its license to operate revoked,” the petition said.

The petition, which was organized by the Coalition For A Better Chinese American Community and Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th), will be submitted Tuesday to the city’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection.

A manager at the bar declined to comment on the petition Saturday.

The shootout happened just before 11 p.m. in the same block as the karaoke bar when a 38-year-old man and another person began firing at each other, Chicago police said.

During the shooting, two women — ages 24 and 42 — were struck by errant gunfire, police said. The younger woman was later pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital.

The alleged 38-year-old shooter suffered a gunshot wound to his buttocks and was listed in critical condition at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, officials said. The second gunman fled and was not taken into custody.

Police initially said the 38-year-old was taken into custody at the hospital, but on Saturday updated their statement to say “at the moment there are no offenders in custody and no one is being questioned by area detectives... The investigation remains ongoing.”

Six Chinatown residents on Saturday said they are worried about safety in their neighborhood. Some of them said they work in the shops along Wentworth Avenue and heard the gunshots the night before, but mistook them for fireworks.

“This is a big problem, we are worried about safety in the area and how more violence could impact our businesses,” one of the clerks, who asked not to be named, told a reporter.

In a statement, Sigcho-Lopez said his ward, which includes Chinatown, had already seen multiple shooting heading into the Fourth of July weekend — which historically has seen a spike in gun violence.

“Bar fights are ending in deadly shootings. The flow of guns on our streets cannot be normalized. Mass shootings cannot be normalized. We’re living through a crisis,” Sigcho-Lopez said.

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One man, 24, was taken to a hospital in critical condition.
The man, 44, and woman were found dead about 3:30 p.m. Monday.
Prosecutors have not yet decided if any charges will be filed in the case, saying they would review the latest reports and were awaiting cell phone data from Baldwin’s attorneys.