The closure of the Mynt Lounge at 4205 Hacks Cross Road follows a nuisance petition filed last week which closed the club pending a hearing this week in Environmental Court/General Sessions 14. A consent order signed Thursday morning by representatives of the club and the DA’s Office made the closure permanent.
The Mynt Lounge was the scene of the homicide of New Orleans firefighter Gregory Howard, 37, who was killed shortly after 2 a.m. on Aug. 26. He was an innocent bystander when at least two men who had been kicked out of the club began shooting and one of the bullets struck and killed Howard.
An $11,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of those involved in the shooting. Call CrimeStoppers at 528-CASH. Howard, a nine-year veteran of the New Orleans Fire Department, left a wife and two sons.
The nuisance petition was filed against the club following a lengthy investigation by members of the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office and the Multi-Agency Gang Unit.
Since the Mynt Lounge opened on Jan. 15, 2016, deputies have responded to 57 calls for service, including armed parties, assaults, auto burglaries, crowd control, disturbances, domestic assaults, and noise complaints. Deputies have had 344 calls for service within a half mile the lounge since its opening, including assaults, burglaries, robberies, rapes, thefts and homicide.
The lounge is less than a mile from four churches and within 1.4 miles of three schools.
A temporary injunction/restraining order closing the club and a petition for abatement of a nuisance were filed by Gen. Weirich and Bruce McMullen, Chief Legal Officer/City Attorney for the City of Memphis.
The case is being handled by Chief Prosecutor Paul Hagerman of the DA’s Multi-Agency Gang Prosecution Unit (MGU), and Asst. City Prosecutors William L. Gibbons Jr. and Kenya Hooks.
Under Tennessee nuisance law, the District Attorney General has authority to bring a civil action against any establishment deemed a nuisance. The statute defines a nuisance, in part, as “any place in or upon which. . .unlawful sale of any regulated legend drug, narcotic or other controlled substance. . .quarrelling, drunkenness, fighting or breaches of the peace are carried on or permitted."
Similar investigations by law enforcement have resulted in the DA’s office filing nuisance petitions against the owners of more than 200 residential and business properties. Some have resulted in permanent closure of the properties, while others have reopened under consent orders after agreeing to measures to curb illegal activity.