County Attorney Sues to Shut Down Another After-Hours Club

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Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan filed a lawsuit this week to shut down another after-hours club on Houston's far north side, continuing his crusade against bars and clubs he claims are a nuisance and magnets for violent crime.

The county aims to shutter Club Eclipse on FM 1960, which grabbed headlines last month after a cell phone video posted to the Facebook page "Strippers and Fights" (we kid you not) showed a violent brawl spilling out into the club's parking lot. The county claims shots were fired and at least one person was stabbed in the head and arm during the incident.

The lawsuit filed Tuesday lists as defendants Victoria Gonzalez Zarate and Miguel Zarate, who owned and operated another place called Club La Cave until they were sued by the county in late 2012. In that case, the county claimed La Cave was a hotbed for violence, rampant gang activity and illegal and underage alcohol sales. That lawsuit ended when La Cave was evicted.

Among the reasons the county now claims Club Eclipse is a nuisance and should be shut down: - A patron was shot and left to die on the sidewalk outside the club after a fight. - A club patron ran over a security guard then backed his vehicle into the front door and windows of a bingo hall next door. - Patrons were robbed at gunpoint outside the club. When the suspect ran into the club, security wouldn't let the victims in.

"The assaults, robberies, fights and the presence of gang members threatens the residents and businesses in the area around Club Eclipse," Ryan said in a statement. Police responded to 55 calls for service in the past year alone, he said. "This must stop."

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