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Living Near A Port Chester Nightclub: Noise, Fights and Public Urination

What do residents do when local law enforcement and officials won't step up to keep unruly businesses in line with the town ordinances?

The thing that attracted us most to Port Chester was the great diversity of restaurants and the success of small, local businesses.

We live in a neighborhood that the zoning department has designated as mixed use, so we share our lives with several of the aforementioned businesses. One of them, unfortunately, is a .  

The club seems to cater primarily to Connecticut residents who get turfed out of bars between midnight and 1 a.m. So, just as my neighborhood is entering into a deep slumber, the club is gearing up for a busy night. If handled properly, this would probably not be a bad thing. However, in this situation, it is not being handled properly.

My neighbors and I have been trying now for about nine months to see some action taken about the excessive noise between the hours of midnight and 4 a.m., six nights a week. (Tuesday nights are a blessed relief.) Specifically, very loud music.  

The club has never bothered to install any type of noise insulation. Any music played inside the establishment is also blasting into the back yards of all of the local residents.  

So, we figured, we’d call the police. Several nights a week, we crawl out of bed around 1 or 2 a.m. and go downstairs to phone in a noise complaint. My guess is about 50 percent of the calls are responded to. I understand that there are many times when the police have more pressing situations to deal with, and I understand that completely. The problem is actually the 50 percent of the time when they do respond.  

If the complainant is not waiting outside to meet them, they often just drive by and decide the noise isn't too loud. I don't blame them for thinking this, because the street-side noise isn't all that bad. The real problem is at the back of the club, where you can only hear the music when you're standing in our back yards. (Or attempting to sleep in our bedrooms at the back of our houses.)

If we happen to catch on officer, it then becomes a struggle to get them out of their car to investigate the noise. In all fairness, they used to be more willing, but it seems they've grown tired of the complaints. The last officer that came out actually told me that if the noise wasn't present on Main Street itself, it was out of his jurisdiction to investigate.I’m no lawyer, but Chapter 224-2 Section C Number 12 doesn't seem to state any requirement for the disturbance to occur on public property. 

It gets better. I was eventually informed by the police that the noise laws in Port Chester are old and were written before modern-day music systems existed, therefore they’re not really relevant anymore. Huh? I always thought that if the law was on the books, it required enforcement. Not to mention that according to the laws, this section was amended on March 21, 2011.

And the problems have become worse than mere noise. Fights have broken out in the street in front of our homes. Someone has fired off a gun, twice! Patrons have smashed the glass in the door of the establishment. They also trespass on our properties and use them as latrines and dumping grounds. We have found everything from empty and broken beer bottles to drug packets littering our properties. 

Once the police stopped being interested in assisting me, I took my complaints to both Mayor Dennis Pilla and Trustee Luis Marino. While they both seemed very willing to lend assistance in the beginning, I have stopped receiving follow ups from either of them.

So, I'm reaching out to the public at this point for either help or suggestions. Nobody should have to live under these conditions.

P.S.  As of last night, it turns out the owners feel it's acceptable to pump sewage into the street.  The Department of Health is investigating this today, but they've already confirmed to me that the worst-case scenario for the business is a fine, but most likely, the owners will just be told not to do this again. Children live in the apartment building right next door.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Sean A. McNerney May 16, 2012 at 06:38 PM
I've had meetings with the Mayor and numerous members of the police force. I'm certainly not going to accuse them of not doing their job. My understanding is that the current budget can only support so many night officers and PC is not exactly a quiet town. And honestly, I sincerely hope they put more serious priorities ahead of mine. I think this is really more of an issue that the town needs to address. Stricter enforcement of noise, loitering and other ordinances. While I certainly want things to improve, I want it know that I do believe the police are doing their best with what they have to work with.
Sean A. McNerney May 16, 2012 at 06:40 PM
Don't think I don't have fantasies about that sort of thing! Fortunately or unfortunately, I think trying to fix this from within the system will bring about better long term results than retribution style reactions.But yes, self control is a very hard thing to maintain at 1:30 in the morning.
George Datino May 17, 2012 at 11:34 AM
You know, if the village doesn't want ot enforce its own laws (which I believe are in effect 24 hours a day, not just when the budget says they can be enforced), you may want to try and make an inquiry with the State Liquor Authority. I do believe there are certain rules that are attached to the establishment's license. Maybe they can help. If you want to get their attention, going after their Liquor License will do it. Without that, they might as well close. That is where the money is.
Renee Pastore November 01, 2012 at 12:10 AM
pc bar fly i am a patron of la dolce vita i have first hand witnessed the security from the bar help customers as well as police the people in front of your house sean you should have looked around before you bought your house what thriving business did you notice in the town 1/3 of main st is vacant without these bars their clientel would be drinking on the street also it seems you have a blind eye to the bar that YOU DRINK AT JT STAWS you dont seem to notice anything from there or dont your cameras go that far second your cameras should face your home not a bar dont like pc fucking move prick
Sean A. McNerney November 01, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Renee, I'm not 100% what you mean about my cameras. They are absolutely positioned to protect my house. The fact that LDV and JTS (yes, both of them) are in the view of one of my cameras is coincidental. Also, you really should get to know me before throwing accusations at me about what I do in my free time and where I patron. As far as the security there goes, I happen to know them from many late night conversations I’ve had to have with them. They tell me each and every time that they are doing there best, but there are only so many people they can keep an eye on. So while I do believe they mean well, I don’t think they’re enough to make a real difference. And if you’re right, that the patrons of LDV would be drinking in the street if not for the existence of the bar, then I think that proves my point that the clientele do not belong in a largely residential neighborhood. Lastly, I think you are confused, because I absolutely love Port Chester. If I did not care about the town, I would not be making a concerted effort to improve living conditions here.

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