Posted on Thu, Mar. 18, 2010
Phila. man shot, killed in Upper Darby bar
By Kristin E. Holmes
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Upper Darby police were investigating the killing of a Philadelphia man who was shot early Thursday in a bar that has been the subject of scores of complaints.
Tyrik Richardson, 24, was found in the bathroom of the Cheers Cocktail Lodge on the 6800 block of Market Street at 1:43 a.m. Police were looking for a gunman, said Police Superintendent Michael Chitwood; authorities have the nickname of a possible suspect, but declined to release it.
Richardson was shot in the chest and heart and found on his back, Chitwood said. At least eight shots were fired in the bathroom.
Police said they believed the shooting was related to an argument over drugs. About 35 patrons were in the bar when police arrived.
At a news conference Thursday, Chitwood waved a two-inch-thick pack of complaints against the lounge, which the Liquor Control Board has deemed a nuisance bar.
Since January 2009, police have been called to the lounge 180 times. Chitwood called it a "cesspool," "pig's pen," and "criminal enterprise."
The bar is owned by the 6840 Market Street Corp., said Robert Herdelin, an officer of the company. The bar has been the site of shootings, stabbings, and drug activity, Chitwood said. The state has repeatedly cited the lounge for infractions including serving minors and serving intoxicated people.
Herdelin, 68, who called himself a businessman and real estate tycoon, said he had tried repeatedly to crack down on troublesome patrons.
In 2008, Herdelin received a citizen award from police for capturing an assault suspect who had entered the bar, Chitwood said.
Herdelin said he was upstairs in his apartment at the time of the shooting, but with the help of his staff gave some information to police.
Cheers was raided in November by 40 officials, including Upper Darby police and agents with the Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement. Township officials closed the bar temporarily for sanitation problems, Chitwood said.
Also in November, the LCB informed Herdelin that his license would not be renewed, said Francesca Chapman, spokeswoman for the agency. The bar remains open during his appeal.
The bar is in the 69th Street shopping district. Its white brick facade is unkempt.