Five DC9 employees charged with assault in man's death near U Street-area club (video)


An earlier version of this story stated that the victim was refused entry into the 9:30 Club. The victim was asked to leave DC9, a nearby club. This story also originally said that responding officers found the man dead. It's not clear whether he was dead when police arrived. Also, police originally identified 25-year-old Arthur Zaloga as Arthur Zaloca.

Lanier, however, said the victim was barely conscious when police arrived and that his injuries were not consistent with someone merely being held down. He had been beaten and kicked, she said. Police also said Friday evening that Mohammed was transported to Howard University Hospital by D.C. Fire and EMS, not in a police vehicle.


(Sketch: William Hennessey)

On Friday morning, Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham sent an e-mail to community groups that said the dead man was reportedly intoxicated when he threw bricks through the bar's window. (See more from Graham on video below.) One employee also said Mohammed was intoxicated.

Mohammed had been asked to leave the club because it was closed and later returned to throw two bricks through its front window, police said. A police spokesperson said three to five people came out of the club and chased the man down, then severely beat him.

She says Mohammed was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead a short time later. Reached at Mohammed's listed phone number in Silver Spring this afternoon, Mohammed's sister, Sofiya Mohammed, said her brother was on unemployment and used to work for UPS. She said her other brother and her mother had seen Mohammed on Thursday. She added that she didn't think he'd ever had legal troubles.

His father, Ahmed Goltchu Mohammed, told reporters late this afternoon that police weren't telling the family anything.

Graham also said that earlier Friday night, another patron had punched and broken a window. He was subsequently arrested.

Since DC9 opened in 2004, there has only been one formal complaint against it filed with the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration, according to documents obtained by TBD. In May of 2009, ABRA opened an investigation into a charge that the club had violated its voluntary agreement by leaving its front door propped open past 10 p.m. Following a subsequent hearing on the matter, the Office of the Attorney General declined to pursue it.

"They never have really been a source of complaints," says Bryan Martin Firvida, a former president of the U Street Neighborhood Association. "Considering the size that they were, with two floors and live shows, it's the kind of place that would be ripe for complaints, but they really didn't get any, and that really speaks to their management."

Reporting, writing and technical assistance provided by Andrew Beaujon, Sommer Mathis, Allene Bryant, Markham Evans, Sarah Godfrey, Amanda Hess, Ryan Kearney, Jay Korff, Courtney Robinson, Dan Patrick, Erik Wemple, Mandy Jenkins, and Julie Westfall.

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