The Poughkeepsie bar that was the site of an alleged assault seen more than a million times in a video posted to various online platforms has been ordered by the New York State Liquor Authority to stop selling alcohol.
The emergency suspension of Milo's Cantina's liquor license was ordered Wednesday afternoon by Board Chairman Vincent Bradley during a meeting of the authority's full board.
The bouncer and a woman who identified herself in the video as the manager block Boyce from leaving. The bouncer immediately slams Boyce to the floor and puts him in a chokehold. Seconds later, the manager forces the person shooting the video out of the bar. She locks the door as the bouncer corners Boyce beneath the bar and knees him several times.
A summary issued by the authority's public affairs office said the bar staff committed multiple violations during the incident.
"The bouncer continues to hold the patron, who does not appear to be acting aggressively or resisting, on the ground in a chokehold for over two minutes," the summary said.
"At no time during the recorded video does a member of Milo’s Cantina’s staff attempt to intervene or diffuse the situation. In fact, during the altercation the manager and another individual working behind the bar are seen simply picking up bar stools that have been knocked over during the skirmish."
During a June 6 visit to the bar by SLA investigators, Milo's owner said his staff advised him that Boyce used foul language and threatened the bouncer with a knife, according to the summary.
Poughkeepsie Police said in a press release after the incident that there was "an allegation" of a knife being involved. The SLA has found no evidence of a knife being involved.
"The licensee further claimed that video recording of the incident was edited to remove the security guard’s voice yelling that the patron had a knife," according to the summary.
Anthony Cillis, an attorney representing Milo's, said previously that he had obtained additional high-definition surveillance video, and was "in the process of turning it over to police."
"The licensee claimed a video from the bar’s security cameras shows the bouncer with the knife taken from the patron," the summary continued. "However no such video was turned over to SLA investigators."
The SLA charged Milo's with four violations of the ABC Law, including operating a disorderly premises, failure to supervise and employing unlicensed security guards.
“The video captures a disturbing scene which shows the very person whose job it is to prevent these kinds of incidents, committing an assault,” Deputy Counsel to the Authority Lisa Ogden said in the summary. “The actions of this bar’s manager, or lack thereof, are equally problematic. Rather than take control the situation, she simply locked the door and idly looked on as her bouncer slammed a patron onto the floor, held him in a chokehold, and proceeded to pummel him on the ground. The SLA will take immediate action against any licensee whose employees actions threaten the safety of their patrons.”
Poughkeepsie Police said a criminal investigation could not continue since Boyce has declined to press charges. Boyce's attorney Joseph O'Connor said criminal charges are still possible, as he has "been contacted by others who may have been assaulted by this security guard."
When asked if Boyce plans to sue Milo's, O'Connor said, "Formal civil action could be contemplated later on."