WEST RIDGE —Two people have been arrested in connection to the raid on a West Ridge “social club” that is suspected of housing gambling, drug dealing and prostitution.
The two people were arrested during a raid on the social club Tuesday, Ald. Debra Silverstein (50th) announced on Thursday. Chicago Police confirmed the arrests.
Jonina Cunanan, 36, of Chicago, was charged with one felony count of possession of less than five grams of methamphetamine and one misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia, according to police.
Allen Isip, 34 of Chicago, was charged with one misdemeanor count of keeping a gambling place, police said.
Neither was charged with any prostitution-related counts. But Ald. Silverstein, in her announcement to constituents, said neighbors and officials have also suspected prostitution was conducted at the business.
Word of the arrests comes as the building that housed the social club at 6948 N. Western Ave. is being demolished. Law enforcement raided the business, listed as JNG in city records, for an investigation regarding drug sales, illegal gambling operations and fraud.
During the search of the building, city inspectors determined the structure was “severely structurally compromised” and an emergency demolition order was given, according to a spokesperson for the city’s office of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection.
The demolition began Wednesday and was nearly complete as of Thursday morning. Just the blue brick and wood front wall stood as of 9 a.m. Thursday.
The raid on the Western Avenue storefront came after months of community complaints about the business, with neighbors saying it led to violence in the area.
Two shootings, including one on Jan. 29, have been tied to the Western Avenue business, Silverstein said. Neighbors have also called in reports of shots fired that may have been tied to activity at the building.
“There’s obviously bad things going on in there,” one neighbor said at a January community meeting held by the Rogers Park police district. “Twice I’ve walked over there. It looks like a flop house. There’s sheets and pillows shoved up against the window. It’s shady. You see young teenage kids going in there all day long.”
The investigation led city officials to issue 15 citations against the business. City officials would not specific the citations but said they could include operating after a cease-and-desist order was given and failure to abide by current public health orders.
State and federal agencies including Homeland Security assisted local police in the raid on the social club. The investigation into the business is ongoing, Silverstein said.
“This is a great example of the community and the police working together to solve a problem that was affecting the quality of life for residents,” Silverstein said in a social media post announcing the arrests.
Listen to “It’s All Good: A Block Club Chicago Podcast” here: