PORTLAND, Maine — The owners of Sangillo’s Tavern will appeal the denial of their liquor license in a hearing rescheduled for October. The hearing had been previously set for 9:30 a.m. Thursday at City Hall.
The hearing will be conducted by staff from the state Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages & Lottery Operations. Laurence Sanborn, who manages the agency’s Liquor Licensing and Enforcement Division, said in June that public comment will be accepted at the hearing, which will consider anew the evidence heard by city councilors on March 17.
Councilors voted 5-4 on April 7 to deny a city license for the 18 Hampshire St. tavern, which has been family owned for about 60 years. If the denial be upheld, the tavern, which has remained open while the appeal is pending, would also lose its state license.
Sanborn said a decision could take 30 days or more, depending on the length of testimony, which will be limited to evidence submitted by the Portland Police Department regarding activity and complaints from the spring of 2013 through last winter and steps bar owner Dana Sangillo and his staff took in response.
In March, Police Chief Michael Sauschuck and Assistant Police Chief Vern Malloch said the department recommended denying the license renewal because of a repeated pattern of disturbances and a lack of adequate training for staff and management at the bar.
Tavern manager Kathleen Sangillo, her staff and patrons defended the bar, saying most police complaints about noise and fighting had come from one neighbor about incidents outside the bar. They noted two calls cited by police came from bar staff who sought assistance after patrons had been denied entry or asked to leave.
Police also cited a shooting outside the bar at 1:21 a.m. Jan. 28 that left a man paralyzed. The shooting remains unsolved, but Malloch said “all of the parties we have identified were patrons of Sangillo’s and left Sangillo’s at closing time that night.”