Last updated: September 10. 2013 11:35PM - 2856 Views
B. GARRET ROGAN Times Leader Correspondent

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DUPONT — Borough residents and the owner of Continental Bar and Grill came to Tuesday night’s council meeting in response to complaints about activities at the establishment.

John Slivkanch, of Center Street, presented a petition with 30 signatures of residents in the vicinity of Continental seeking permit parking only in that area.

He then repeated his complaint from the August public meeting that patrons are littering, and some cases, urinating in his property when they leave the bar.

Amari Oliveira, the establishment’s owner, said he feels discriminated against by the residents and police in the area.

He took issue with occasions when borough officers entered his bar, accusing them of harassment, and said he believed black and latino customers are routinely treated with more scrutiny when leaving the bar than white customers.

But acting police Chief John Saranchek denied the accusations. He said officers have entered the bar only in response to calls.

He said that on the night of Aug. 16 alone, 13 calls were received from eight different callers between 9:41 p.m. and 2:07 a.m. While he didn’t provide specific numbers, Saranchek said no patrons were singled out on the basis of race or skin color.

Several residents also denied accusations of discrimination and said their complaints concerned noise and lewd behavior.

Bill DeFazio, the owner of the building that houses Continental, however, supported Oliveira’s contention, and said he had very loud and popular musical acts when he ran Corner Pocket Lounge but never received complaints about noise.

Oliveira said he installed “thousands of dollars worth” of sound proofing to the windows and walls. He said he also fired a D.J. who repeatedly exceeded volume limits and regularly monitors what’s going on outside during closing times when he is present.

Borough officials told residents about their intentions to have private meetings involving DeFazio, Oliveira and police officers.

The regular council meeting will be on Oct. 8 at 7 p.m.

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