Maybe a man was smashed in the face with a beer bottle at an Allston bar, and maybe he wasn't

A manager at Tavern in the Square in Allston had to explain to the Boston Licensing Board today why nobody at the Brighton Avenue bar called police after a patron had a beer bottle thrown at his head and another was tossed to the sidewalk outside and kicked by bouncers on March 16.

That's because none of it happened, manager Patrick Dylan told board members at a hearing today.

On Thursday, the board has to decide which story to believe and what, if anything to do about it.

A police detective and a man who said he was a member of a group attacked by both fellow patrons and bouncers told the board a fight broke out around 1:30 a.m. after the man accidentally bumped into another customer at the bar. The man said he apologized and thought that was the end of it - until the bumped guy returned with some friends. He said bouncers were in the process of ejecting him and his friends when one of their attackers lobbed a beer bottle at his group. He said the bottle connected with the face of his friend, opening up a gash that ultimately required nine stitches to close.

He continued that bouncers picked him up by all fours, tossed him to the ground outside, then kicked him a few times for good measure. He said at that point, he and his group decided they had to get their bleeding companion to the hospital right away, rather than calling 911 and staying around. He added he called Tavern in the Square the next morning to tell them he intended to complain to police, which he then did.

Dylan said he was in the bar that morning and while he didn't see the initial argument said he is convinced no beer bottle was thrown, no punches or kicks launched by his bouncers. When he got outside, he said, the alleged victims were screaming at bouncers demanding to be let back in.

"Nobody was bleeding," he said. "Nobody was visibly injured."

Afterwards, he said, his staff told him the alleged victims were the ones who were the "more aggressive" half of the argument and denied picking up, throwing or kicking anybody.

Although the bar has a video surveillance system that might have shown what happened, by the time police requested the video, the system had already overwritten it. A detective said he first talked to the bar on March 27 - the video system is on a three-day loop.

Board member Nicole Murati Ferrer told Dylan she was amazed that the assistant manager who talked to one of the alleged victims the next morning did not immediately make a copy of the video from earlier that days, if only to protect the bar. "You guys get sued all the time," she said. Dylan said he could not say why the assistant manager didn't save the video, but added that, going forward, all management staff at the bar have been instructed to save video when there's even the slightest chance it could be needed.

Last month, the board ordered the bar to shut for one day for failing to call police about a fight in January.

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    Comments

    "Sued all the time?"

    Easy with the melodrama, Ferrer. I don't recall the bar having been "sued" for anything.

    As for the actual incident, I'll believe anything I hear about that place at this point. A colleague of mine tells me that many of their problems are brought on by an aggressive door staff, which amps up the customers and makes them more inclined to fight people.

    Referent of "you guys"

    I read it as "you guys" meaning "bar owners", not this particular bar. Bar owners do get sued all the time, on the theory that the sociopathic behavior of irresponsible drunks is somehow the bar's fault.

    When it was the Kells

    I was dragged there a few times by my friends. The door staff was insurmountably rude every time and had a serious attitude. They made you feel like a criminal simply for walking in the door.

    The very last time I was forced into that establishment, I was 23 and the bouncer accused me of having a fake ID. Fortunately, by then we were all adult enough to have the sense to go elsewhere.

    Be rude to your respectable customers, and all you'll be left with are customers who can't handle nicer bars because they do things like stab, fight, and throw bottles.

    here is a bigger question

    a 3 day loop for the video system? what are you using? VHS???

    If you have a set 3 day loop you are doing it for a reason, so that nobody will see what happens, and can come back and use it against you. If you are on the level, when you made all of the changes to the bar, why not include a good camera system??

    Seriously, do you have any

    Seriously, do you have any idea how much space 72 hours of raw video from the six or more cameras they probably have takes up? Even if its shitty quality and compresed, its a ton. Go download 72 hours of movies onto your pc and see how much space you have. I don't think it would be fair to require a bar to have a googlesque server farm in the basement just beause people don't understand how to control themselves in public.

    Nerd moment

    Skype needs about 4 MB/min for its video (compressed, obviously). So, 240 MB/hour, 5760 MB/day, and 103680 MB for 6 cameras over 3 days. That's about 101 GB.

    I just checked and you can buy a terabyte HD for about $70. That ought to easily store 24 days worth of video from 6 webcam-quality cameras with some space left over.

    Of course, you are right that people ought to be able to control themselves in public. But the cost of video monitoring is not that severe as you claim, for better or for worse.

    molly's/the kells/tavern on the blah blah blah..............

    saw numerous people take bottles to the head at this location. i thnk ive told this story here before but here goes.

    when it was still molly's a friend of mine was involved in some kind of scuffle with a much larger more agressive man. the bouncers proceeded to place the two of them outside the doors, onto the brighton ave sidewalk, and then locked the doors behind them. the big guy turned to my (much smaller) friend and proceeded to bite his top lip off his face. lawsuits and multiple surgeries followed. molly's was found at fault and ceased to exist shortly thereafter.

    a bucket of blood as my mother used to say.