Wednesday nights a 'zoo' for Cal police
California Borough police were busy early Thursday with disturbances that occurred within 40 minutes of each other inside a Third Street bar.
Police Chief Rick Encapera said the back-to-back calls are the latest in a series of Wednesday night and early Thursday morning incidents at downtown bars just blocks from the California University of Pennsylvania campus.
Encapera said a “large fight” broke out 1:39 a.m. inside J. Coles Inn at 334 Third St.
Police were still in the process of identifying the alleged suspects Thursday afternoon, he said.
Police said at least five people were brawling inside the bar when Cal U police arrived and broke up the fight.
Encapera said that in the meantime, his officers were dealing with a Virginia woman they arrested at J. Coles around 1 a.m., just before the fight broke out.
Encapera said Courtinee Qnique Whitaker, 21, of Stafford, was charged with resisting arrest, terroristic threats, disorderly conduct, harassment and public drunkenness.
“She had lost her cell phone, and I guess she was blaming everyone in the bar,” Encapera said. “She knocked stuff off the bouncer's table and went up and unplugged the DJ equipment. ... My officers were tied up with her and took her to be arraigned when the fight broke out.”
Encapera confirmed some patrons had to be “subdued” but referred additional details to campus police.
He said it's uncertain whether Whitaker's alleged actions and subsequent arrest spurred the brawl.
Whitaker was arraigned by Magisterial District Judge Curtis Thompson in Bentleyville, who sent her to the Washington County Correctional Facility in lieu of $20,000 cash bond.
Court records show Whitaker was released Thursday afternoon after she posted 10 percent of the bond.
Encapera said downtown bars are routinely packed with patrons on Wednesday nights.
“Wednesday is what they refer to as bucket night. I guess they sell buckets of beer to generate business,” he said of some bars. “It attracts not only students, but people from out of town. ... Every week, I've got a zoo here.”
Rick Bruni Jr. is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 724-684-2635.
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.