RIVER NORTH — A bar that has long been the source complaints from neighbors was shut down by the city after a mass shooting near its doors over the weekend, the second shooting since the summer that’s tied to the business.
Eight people were shot around 2:30 a.m. Sunday on the 300 block of West Erie Street, according to Chicago police. It started with a fight outside of Blüm Restaurant & Bar that soon erupted into gunfire, with five men and three women shot.
Half of the victims were taken to local hospitals in critical condition, including a 43-year-old woman shot in her abdomen and a man of unknown age who suffered a gunshot to his head, police said.
Two women in their 20s were shot in the foot and taken to local hospitals in good condition, according to police. A 25-year-old man was shot in his groin and was taken to Northwestern Hospital, where he was in good condition, police said. A 27-year-old man was shot multiple times and taken to Northwestern, where his condition stabilized.
No one is in custody and detectives are investigating, police said.
But on Monday police shuttered the doors of Blüm, 316 W. Erie St., “due to the shooting incident that occurred,” a police spokesperson confirmed.
In a letter published Sunday, Ald. Brenden Reilly (42nd) called the bar a “source of chronic neighborhood complaints” and said he pushed for the closure so it could not reopen before the building is set to be sold next month.
“Many of the gun crimes being committed downtown overnight are related to fights originating at these late hour clubs, yet these operators are allowed to remain open,” Reilly said in the letter. “It should not require a mass shooting to result in the closure of a problem nightclub.”
In June, Block Club Chicago reported on a daylight shooting outside Blüm that left one man in critical condition with a gunshot wound to the head and over 50 shell casings scattered along the street. Neighbors previously said that crowds and loitering outside the business on weekends had gotten worse in recent years, raising safety concerns.
Blüm is owned by So Clutch Group, a hospitality company based in Dallas, Texas. Its portfolio includes five other bars and restaurants in major Texas cities, according to the company’s website. Ownership at So Clutch Group did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Reilly said he asked police after the June shooting to increase patrols on the street and move to shut down the business after its investigation.
A police spokesperson did not directly answer questions in June about whether they’d ultimately pursue a summary closure.
The Erie Street establishment has undergone a handful of name changes under one corporation since 2008: from Coyote Ugly Saloon to Patron’s Hacienda to Clutch Bar & Restaurant before becoming Blüm after 2021.
The business has had nine citations, but none under its current name, a spokesperson with Business Affairs and Consumer Protection said in June. The agency has received 22 complaints against the business since 2008.
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