Twenty-one days after an argument-led shooting occurred outside his club, Justin Lindell - owner of The Q sports bar and nightclub in Jamestown - is more determined than ever to keep his patrons safe.
Lindell, who told The Post-Journal shortly after the incident that "this was not the direction (he) wanted to go in," has now employed a series of safety measures that are seemingly taking his club in a new, more promising, direction.
"We've tightened up on the dress code quite a bit," said Lindell, who pointed to chains, doo-rags, sunglasses and excessively baggy clothing as just some of the attire now inappropriate. "We've seen a huge change in the crowd ... everyone seems to be trying a lot harder to dress more appropriately."
Lindell has switched the club's style of music, avoiding hip hop and gangster rap and opting instead for dance and pop.
Bag searches and metal detectors are also being employed at the front door, complete with nine security cameras around the club.
The overall "upgrade" of The Q will continue into next year, said Lindell, who's even considering a temporary closure of the nightclub for 60 to 90 days.
"When I opened The Q, it was more of a
platform to help out the community. I came from a poor family myself, and I've always wanted to give back."
The Q owner
When asked if these new safety measures are providing his patrons with a greater sense of comfort, Lindell simply said, "without a doubt."
"When I opened The Q, it was more of a platform to help out the community," Lindell said. "I wanted to create a safe place where people could go out and have fun."
In many ways, this sense of community is a running theme in Lindell's life, with the 10-year Jamestown resident quickly garnering a reputation for his contributions to local charity organizations. A notable gesture occurred last month, when The Q prepared three Thanksgiving dinners for the public, asking only for a 50-cent or $1 donation for a particular charity.
"I came from a poor family myself, and I've always wanted to give back," Lindell said.
The aforementioned incident at The Q occurred on Dec. 1. Lindell, who was at the club at the time, described how an argument broke out between four men at approximately midnight. As the group went outside, one of the men started chasing two others with a gun, firing three shots at them as they stood in the area of West Second and Cherry streets.
According to the Jamestown Police Department, the shooter is alleged to be a black male, about 6 feet tall, weighing 180 pounds and in his early to mid-20s.
While unsure about the nature of the argument, Lindell said the men have been involved in criminal mischief around the city before. In fact, Lindell believes one of their friends was involved in a 2011 shooting incident at the bar, in which a man allegedly shot a handgun into the air.
Captain Robert F. Samuelson, division commander of the Jamestown Police Department, indicated that an investigation into the incident is still ongoing. No developments have been reported.