LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – The Energy Event Center in Logan Square remains open and hosting events, while its fate is uncertain.
An administrative hearing on the revocation of Energy Event Center’s cabaret license was held on Aug. 24. City Council leaders say there is no timeline for the fact findings from the hearing to be reported to the Council, which will have the final decision on whether to take Cabell’s license.
“This is a must — a must-have in the south side of Lansing, Michigan,” Ryan Caball, owner of the event center in Logan Square, said.
While he awaits the decision, he continues to operate with a small number of booked events at the facility. When there is not an event, the hall is empty.
City Council began the process to revoke the license for the performance venue following a July 30 mass shooting incident in the parking lot. The shooting left 5 injured, including one who is paralyzed. The shooting occurred in the middle of a crowd estimated to be over 100 people. The victims aged 15 to 26 -years old were found shot in the area of the event center.
Lansing Police Chief Ellery Sosebee called for the cabaret license to be revoked. Mayor Andy Schor followed through and introduced a resolution to begin an administrative process to cancel the license on Aug. 14.
But Cabell says he can’t be held to account for other people’s actions.
“One thing we can’t do is control somebody else’s mistake, somebody else’s anger,” he says. “But what we can control is the energy we put out.”
Sosebee countered that argument in a letter to the Council in August.
“It is clear that the Energy Event Center is unable, or unwilling, to maintain the peace during its events and has not taken adequate steps to protect life and safety for patrons at its events,” the chief wrote.
In response, the event center owner says this is the only incident that’s occurred. He’s calling for more collaboration instead of revocation of his license. He says he attempted to connect with officials in Schor’s Office to discuss the issue of gun violence but has not heard anything back.
City spokesman Scott Bean says he was not able to confirm if such a request had been made. But he said ongoing legal action by the city would prevent such a meeting from occurring.
At the end of the day, Cabell says Energy Event Center isn’t the problem.
“Why is this such a big issue? Taking the cabaret license when gun violence is the greater issue? Because it will happen ten times after my event,” he says.
The mass shooting was the last straw for city officials in a long, frustrated history with the owners of Logan Square. Last month, they sued the property owners, Logan Capital, LLC in 30th Circuit Court. They are asking Judge Wanda M. Stokes to declare the property a nuisance property. They also ask her to appoint a receiver to administer the property.
In the lawsuit, city attorneys argue since Jan. 1, 2020; Lansing Police Department has been dispatched to Logan Square 563 times. Twenty-six times criminal investigations arose, including four shots-fire incidents, five assaults, three assaults with intent to murder and at least one investigation into illegal gambling establishments.