City board vows to shut Uphams Corner bar

The Boston Licensing Board said today it will seek to shut Cataloni's, 10 Hancock St., after police described a Nov. 28 incident in which a woman was arrested inside the bar on charges of selling cocaine to bar patrons.

This was only the latest in a series of cocaine-related arrests at the bar - police records show coke-related arrests on June 24 and June 9 - and board Chairman Daniel Pokaski said he'd had enough. Pokaski said he would vote at a Thursday meeting to revoke the bar's license immediately.

"This is a drug bazaar out of control," Pokaski said. "Public safety demands it to be closed immediately. This place has gone beyond the pale."

Board member Michael Connolly said he agreed the bar should be shut but indicated he would vote to let its owners try to sell the license first. The third member, Suzanne Ianella, had no comment on the bar.

Boston Police Lt. Eric Eversley said that on the night of Nov. 28, officers arrived on Hancock Street to monitor the bar because of neighborhood complaints about possible drug dealing.

Within three minutes, he said, a car stopped at Hancock and Jerome, a man got out, entered the bar and, two minutes later, ran back to the car. Officers followed the car for awhile, then stopped it. The man was arrested and spat out two plastic bags containing a white powder believed to be cocaine. Eversley said the man agreed to point out his seller to police at the bar and that this was not the first time he'd bought coke from her there; that she sold it from a stash hidden under a bar stool.

Eversley said that back at the bar, the man pointed out the woman and she was arrested. Officers turned over several bar stools and, taped to the bottom of one, found a plastic bag containing 28 smaller bags containing white powder. Eversley acknowledged the powder, in police custody, has yet to be tested for confirmation that it is cocaine. A couple of other patrons were found to be in possession of similar white powder and were also arrested.

Bartender Noreen Clancy told the bar she was familiar with the woman because she had been barrred from an Inman Square bar at which she'd worked because of her arrest on drug charges in South Boston - and that the woman was also barred from Cataloni's. But Clancy said she agreed to let the woman in when she claimed she needed to use the bathroom.

"I didn't want to have a big argument," she told the board. "I figured it was easier to just let her go pee and let her leave." Clancy estimated police arrived 20 to 30 minutes after the woman went into the lady's room.

Pokaski would not even let attorneys for the bar attempt to make a case today. "Your client doesn't doesn't seem to think that drug dealing on a regular basis in a licensed premise is bad as long as they buy a drink," he told them.

Comments

We do not want chains or big box stores in Dorchester! We do not want Dunkin Donuts in Adams Corner putting Greenhills out of business. These faceless corporations do not revitalize an area, nor make it grow. They destroy any sense of community or character that a neighborhood has. I think its important to point out that we there is a big difference between "growth" and "improvement". Dorchester does not need to grow. I would hate to end up like so many of my friends from South Boston, who due to the Yuppie Invasion, cannot afford to buy a home in thier neighborhood. I am happy that Dorchester is an affordable community, and I am also happy to see condo sales slumping (condos=yuppies=exorbitantly high rents). What makes a neighborhood strong is active participation from residents, business owners, elected officials, etc. The owners of Olive Garden and Wal-Mart dont live in our neighborhood, they dont sponsor our little league teams, so why should we welcome them in to put our neighbors' "Mom and Pop" stores out of business?

Mosty of the owners of the Mom and Pops dont live in the hood either.....nothing wrong with the nieghborhood, being peppered with locals owned, but entirely is NOT WORKING...there is no growth unless you count crime drugs lack of police and fire protection taxes water poor urban maintaince unban blight....you need to see beyond the tip of your nose....most mom and Pops dont last......lack of business skills.....bad investment...owners move get old and their kids dont want it.....etc etc etc the 50's and 60's are over and they are not coming back you eoither grow and move forward or stagnant and die and rents are not affordable anywhere in the city let alone Dot condos have nothing to do with....condos are a bad idea becuase they are a bad investment plain and simple location doesnt make a bad investment a good one

Take a sad Song and make it better

Rich Carney

The answer to fixing our neighborhoods is definitely not big box stores. Uphams Corner, like many other neighborhoods in the city, will benefit from small, locally owned businesses whose owners have a stake in the neighborhoods' development and success. That includes bars, restaurants, nail salons, sub shops, convenience stores, etc. The case of Cataloni's is sad for the neighborhood, but we should applaud the city government for taking a tough stance and shutting the place down!

I agree with you about shuttering any bucket of blood no matter what section of the city....but big box store and franchises are what will revitalize the neighborhood MOM & POPS have their place but become the same ol same ol after a fashion with no forward movement no new ideas no new blood you have to look beyond being provincial if you want an enduring econmic base from which to grow.....The Neponset area of dot has the same problem 8 nail salons and 3 major pharmacies and a bunch of mom and pop restaurants....that only get frequented when wanting not to "go out" or economics dictaes, but bring no growth to the area

Take a sad Song and make it better

Rich Carney

Uphams Corner needs businesses that will contribute to the sucsess of the community….not take away form it.

Needs Businesses that care about the patrons they serve….not serve the patrons till they pass out or make drugs accessible to the local bar flies.

This dive should have been shuttered YEARS ago….there is no worthwhile reason this “establishment” should be allowed to continue……You will NEVER see the introduction of any “big Box Stores or well established chains being developed in this area with the provincial attitude that the area needs bars….liquor stores……auto parts places…tanning salons…and nail salons…….you need to eliminate gathering spots for criminals….drunks….junkies…petty thieves….muggers…… and gang members, until that happens Uphams Corner will not grow or prosper and will never attract outside consumers or businesses. You can build all the youth centers…..health care centers….and the like….it will not bring money into the neighborhood, until you change the attraction factor that beckons low lifes

Take a sad Song and make it better

Rich Carney

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