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Security video from tavern shows different narrative for Sunday homicide
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Red Zone controversy

Security video from tavern shows different narrative for Sunday homicide

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Security video from a Kenosha bar shows a different narrative than released by police about a homicide last weekend.

Deyonn Williams, 25, an Illinois resident, was killed by gunfire at about 1:40 a.m. Sunday. In an initial release about the homicide, police said they were called to the area of 49th Street and 8th Avenue for reports of people arguing in a local establishment’s parking lot, which they later identified as the Red Zone. The statement said officers observed 30 to 40 people arguing and that as people began to disperse officers heard gunshots and found Williams lying on a sidewalk.

But Red Zone Sports Bar and Grill owner Duvall Coates said there was never any argument in the bar’s parking lot or outside the bar, 4814 Sheridan Road, and that the shooting happened about a block away.

Coates provided security video from the night of the shooting that shows several men inside the bar shoving each other. Security workers in the bar quickly intervened and walked the men out of the bar and off the Red Zone property.

Coates said he called police to report the incident, and video shows him outside the bar talking on his phone while he and security workers walk the men off the property. Coates and the security officers walk the men — one of whom Coates identified as Williams — across Sheridan Road and the men begin to walk east on 49th Street.

The men did not appear to be arguing with each other as they left, Coates said, and they do not appear to be arguing on the video, although one man is seen exchanging words with security.

The video then shows a Kenosha Police squad car arrive on Sheridan Road. Security workers use flashlights to try to get the officer’s attention and point down 49th toward the area where the men were walking. The squad car pauses on Sheridan — the officer does not stop to speak to Coates or the security officers — and the squad then continues north on Sheridan out of camera range.

“The security team offered assistance to the police to show where the troublemakers went,” Coates said in a formal statement. “The police ignored the security team’s plea for help.”

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Security video shows Coates and the security officers go back across Sheridan to the bar. They were standing in front of the front door to the bar when they heard a gunshot, Coates said. The video shows more officers arrive and one squad blocks off 49th Street at Sheridan.

Police said Williams was found with a gunshot wound. He was lying on the sidewalk in the area of 49th Street and 8th Avenue. He was taken to a local hospital, where he died.

The bar cooperated with police investigating the homicide, providing the security video to detectives and with the ID scanner that recorded everyone who was in the bar the night of the shooting, according to a statement from the bar owner.

No one is in custody for the homicide, according to police.

Upset proprietor

Coates is angry that news reports associated his bar with the shooting, saying that there was never any fight or violence on his property during the incident. He said his staff maintained control of the situation at the bar, and that they went “above and beyond” by walking the men who had been arguing away from the area. He felt targeted by the city, which revoked the bar’s cabaret license in June.

The City Council voted not to renew the Red Zone cabaret license based on a recommendation from Police Chief Daniel Miskinis, who in his recommendation said the bar had one citation for operating after hours and nine noise-related calls between May and early June. The police chief told the council “the establishment has had ongoing negative impacts on the neighborhood.” Without a cabaret license the bar is not allowed to have live bands or live entertainment.

Coates has said that he believes the bar is targeted because its customers are predominantly Black. He said he has attempted to meet every requirement the city provides.

“I’m tired of this,” he said. “I’m getting worn down.”

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