Bar owner arrested in attack, liquor license under review

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News 12 at 11 o'clock, January 7, 2008

AUGUSTA, Ga-- It's a rare situation according to Richmond County investigators.

A bar owner arrested, on a felony charge, accused of a violent attack on a man on new year's that left the victim seriously injured.
Now, the business could also be paying the consequences.

Richmond county vice investigators tell News 12, 1102 Bar and Grill's liquor license will now be reviewed and the commission may take action.

A picture of 31-year-old Billy Carlisle shows just how seriously injured he was and still is after investigators say he was attacked by a co-owner of 1102 on New Years.

33-year-old Mike Guthrie now out on $16,600 bond charged with felony aggravated battery.

"This is an unfortunate event. Our deepest sympathies to Billy." says one of 1102's co-owners Sae Shin.

An unfortunate event for the victim and possibly 1102,who's liquor license is in Guthrie's name, even though the business is shared by four partners.

"It's rare, very rare." Says Sgt. Richard Elim who works as a Richmond County Vice Investigator. He says it's rare that a bar owner may be the one at fault and not the customer, as most recent club and bar problems such as shootings at Super C and Club Dreams have stemmed from the clientele, not the boss.

"I would think this is pretty serious and the injuries look significant. Very significant." adds Sgt. Elim.

Carlisle was rushed to MCG after the early morning attack which witnesses say was unprovoked. According to his family, he underwent more than 8 hours of surgery by three different doctors to repair dozens of breaks to bones in his face including his jaw, nose, and both cheek bones.

"Of course this is disappointing. It's an individuals actions, I can't stop an individuals actions, I can just represent the restaurant as a whole." explains Shin.

Elim, "I think this is an isolated case and we will deal with it."

Sgt. Elim says the license will be reviewed and it will be up to the Richmond County Commission to decide what action to take, from a probation, to suspension, even the license being revoked is a possibility he says.

"This is a new commission. The are taking club owners to task for their actions or in actions. They are sending the message they want people to go out and have a good time." explains Elim.

Which is exactly what businesses tell News 12 they want to happen too.

Carlisle is out of the hospital and recovering at a family member's house. He still cannot talk or eat solid foods.

Friends and family say the attack was unprovoked, News 12's calls to Mike Guthrie were not returned.

In an effort of full disclosure, the victim's sister is an employee of News 12.

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