The D.C. Alcoholic Beverage and Regulation Administration launched an investigation into the Adams Mill Bar and Grill this month, more than eight months after 19-year-old Laura Treanor died of alcohol poisoning after drinking at the establishment.
ABRA spokeswoman Cynthia Simms said the investigation began when the agency received an official report from the Metropolitan Police Department on Oct. 7. Simms declined to answer questions about what the report entailed and what actions ABRA may take, because “it is a pending matter.”
“I can’t explain to you why the investigation didn’t occur until now, or why the report was just received from MPD,” Simms said. “I can’t explain to you why this is happening at this particular time.”
The bar has been the subject of several investigations over the last few years, and was recently fined $12,000 and ordered to serve a consecutive 10-day suspension, according to documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request submitted by The Hatchet. Darrell Green, the owner of the establishment, was ordered to sell the bar in order to save the establishment’s liquor license after he incurred numerous violations, including a failure to pay the fine.
Simms said she does not know how long the investigation will take, but that it would be hard to tell this early in the investigation.
“I won’t say that it’s going to be years, because we do have a time frame of when we’re supposed to have things done,” Simms said. “But I just don’t know where they are with it right now. They just received the report.”
An ABRA official told The Hatchet in late September that the agency had contacted both the University and MPD looking for an official document to start the investigation, but that neither responded to the inquiry. The official, who spoke on a condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, said ABRA couldn’t start an investigation without a report.
“We would need to get a 251 report from MPD or incident report from campus that referenced she was there or mentioned an establishment or location,” the official said.
On Sept. 30, Vice President for External Relations Lorraine Voles said MPD was the “lead investigative agency” in the matter of Treanor’s death, and said the University did not have a copy of the incident report. University Police Chief Dolores Stafford said Oct. 7, however, that the University had “recently” obtained a copy of the report and had reviewed it.
“GWPD and the Dean of Students have an ongoing working relationship with ABRA to identify establishments of concern,” Stafford said Oct. 7 in an e-mail.
MPD Second District Commander Matthew Klein did not respond to questions about MPD protocol regarding underage drinking at bars, but Captain Melvin Gresham said there was not a close relationship between MPD and ABRA.