Crime & Courts

Richmond Co. | Columbia Co. | Aiken Co. |

Arrests made at Surrey Center club

Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013 11:35 AM
Last updated 10:04 PM
  • Follow Crime & courts

A Surrey Center club was shut down Friday and five arrests were made because the club was operating and selling alcohol without a state license, authorities said.

Back | Next
Beck
Beck

According to Jud Seymour, of the Georgia Department of Revenue, a special agent for the department entered Surreal at Surrey, 469 Highland Ave., on Friday evening and made an undercover alcohol buy. Agents then met with the owners and told them to cease operating.

The club’s owners, identified as Matthew Gabriel Widener, 32; Clinton Sasser Martin, 31; and Jason Beck, 33, and two employees – Sara Jane Morris, 24, and Crystil Lynne Allen, 28 – were charged with selling alcohol without a license. They were released Tuesday on $1,300 bond each.

Seymour said the employees were charged for their role in the sales.

The law states no one may manufacture, distribute, sell, handle or possess for sale, or otherwise deal, in alcoholic beverages without obtaining a license. The license must be displayed prominently on the premises.

Comments (30) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
corgimom
30068
Points
corgimom 01/30/13 - 01:16 pm
13
1
It is so sad that two

It is so sad that two innocent, hard-working people were arrested because the owners didn't do what they were supposed to do.

woodymeister
241
Points
woodymeister 01/30/13 - 01:54 pm
4
17
Or a better idea

Typically nothing good happens in a bar or "club". Get a job somewhere that doesn't breed shady behavior and you'll likely not have to worry about issues like this.

Fiat_Lux
14984
Points
Fiat_Lux 01/30/13 - 03:20 pm
9
1
The innocent need to sue these owners

If the employees weren't aware of the illegality of what they were doing, they should sue the owners for all they can get. Those rotten people have done irreparable damage to the people whom they employed.

dichotomy
31651
Points
dichotomy 01/30/13 - 04:06 pm
13
2
"and two employees

"and two employees –...............- were charged with selling alcohol without a license."

Well now that was pretty low down and unnecessary. Okay folks, now when you get a new job anywhere make sure you ask your new employer to see all of their current business licenses, sales tax numbers, and federal and state income tax returns, and any other TAX grab permits that federal, state, and local authorities might require. .

allhans
23471
Points
allhans 01/30/13 - 04:43 pm
3
2
We don't know the

We don't know the relationship between these folks...or do we?

MadisonGH
59
Points
MadisonGH 01/30/13 - 05:03 pm
9
2
2 other employees

Gosh, my heart breaks for the two other girls that were employees. I know Sara Jane and she is just the sweetest, nicest girl and mom. I really hope this gets cleared from their records. I hate it that they are working hard and putting in late hours for their job, while their bosses are responsible for their arrest.

itsanotherday1
41328
Points
itsanotherday1 01/30/13 - 07:58 pm
10
2
From the information given,

From the information given, this sounds like typical heavy handed law enforcement where some judgement should have been employed. Maybe there are details not yet published.

GiantsAllDay
9279
Points
GiantsAllDay 01/30/13 - 08:55 pm
5
3
Is this the library, surrey

Is this the library, surrey tavern or some other club on the lower level?

GiantsAllDay
9279
Points
GiantsAllDay 01/30/13 - 09:00 pm
9
8
Madison

The cops and the solicitors office will try and ruin ANYBODY's life in ANYWAY they can. It's called a career move in the upward direction. The solicitor wants to be a DA someday. The cop likes to push people around because of his inadequacies. Your friend is an unfortunate fallout from all this. I'm sorry.

happychimer
16508
Points
happychimer 01/30/13 - 09:59 pm
6
3
If the club owners did not

If the club owners did not have a license to sell alcohol, then they should have been arrested. It's called breaking the law.

Gage Creed
16441
Points
Gage Creed 01/30/13 - 11:04 pm
5
1
Thank you Captain Obvious!

Thank you Captain Obvious!

GiantsAllDay
9279
Points
GiantsAllDay 01/31/13 - 12:06 am
9
10
Madison

Sara Jane gets her name in the paper because this is Augusta and this paper likes to shame people for minor mistakes. No real news here except for religious zealots doing whatever they do. I even wonder if the chronicle's sports department has even sent a correspondent down to cover the super bowl. It's not golf, so I doubt it. I would like to know if there is a city in this country with a population over 250,000 where Sara Jane would have had her name in the paper. Sara Jane: Sorry girl, but you're a victim of a small town with an even smaller paper with an even smaller mentality.

itsanotherday1
41328
Points
itsanotherday1 01/31/13 - 12:34 am
10
5
GAD, you are hitting home

GAD, you are hitting home runs. Small town mentality indeed.

KSL
124747
Points
KSL 01/31/13 - 01:06 am
3
1
The owners were arrested..

They were arrested. Who said they should not have been?

GiantsAllDay
9279
Points
GiantsAllDay 01/31/13 - 01:02 am
4
11
It's another day

I know. A person is trying to make an honest living and is doing what her boss tells her to do (just like anyone would). She has no idea that the business hasn't dotted all the i's and crossed all the t's so the big bad cop is going to bust everyone in sight. I can even give the cop a little break. He has a badge and a gun to make up for whatever little things he has going on in his life (maybe his dad didnt approve of him or he got D's in high school) so he cites everyone in the 706 area code and maybe even the next one over. But I cannot, I will not give the August chronicle a pass. They have empty newsprint available so they they publish her name. What cutting edge journalism. Woodward and Bernstein would be proud.

KSL
124747
Points
KSL 01/31/13 - 01:08 am
6
2
Public information. Don't

Public information. Don't report names and some partial faction will claim coverup.

KSL
124747
Points
KSL 01/31/13 - 01:21 am
2
3
Where I work, the license to

Where I work, the license to do what I do is prominently displayed. I do not want to come down hard on those employees, but if they are serving alcohol, they are charged with cutting off someone who has arrived at the point of becoming over-served. If the establishment has a legitimate license to serve alcohol, would that not be posted somewhere the employees, at least, could see it?

GiantsAllDay
9279
Points
GiantsAllDay 01/31/13 - 01:36 am
9
6
KSL

KSL, I get your point I really do. And maybe I'm the one out of touch with reality (that's quite possible). But what I see here is a sentient human being trying to feed her family and put a roof over their heads. The cop could have cited the bar owners, shut it down or whatever and told the employees to go home. But he didn't do that, did he? Someone on here even made the comment that if you don't want to get arrested, don't work in a bar. I mean, GEEZUS H KUHRIST!!!! I've seen a lot of scary movies in my life (and I've even enjoyed some of them), but there is nothing more frightening than a small town cop. Just look at the Grovetown BB gun incident, for example.

InChristLove
22452
Points
InChristLove 01/31/13 - 07:15 am
4
2
Deep breath Giant, Deep

Deep breath Giant, Deep Breath. I agree with you that the servers probably had no idea that the owners did not have a license and should have been able to go home and not been charged. Don't know the officer who arrested everyone so can't make a comment on whether he/she has inadequacies or not but I'm really confused about your statement "No real news here except for religious zealots doing whatever they do". I read the article twist and fail to see where religion is mentioned at all. sincerely hope all this mess will get straightened out for your friend.

KSL
124747
Points
KSL 01/31/13 - 07:36 am
2
4
Giants, I appreciate your

Giants, I appreciate your sentiments. But what I see here is more and more getting away from personal responsibility. It is not difficult to check the credentials of someone you work for these days.

mike1sc
197
Points
mike1sc 01/31/13 - 08:05 am
0
3
Well, we will probably never

Well, we will probably never know if there was something personal related to this story. It does seem a bit heavy-handed how it was handled. It's not like we had a shooting at this location....oh wait, there have been some bars in the news lately where there was shooting, underage drinking, and selling alcohol without a license.....now this story is beginning to make a little more sense...now I understand.

Riverman1
81319
Points
Riverman1 01/31/13 - 08:31 am
3
1
IsAnotherDay is Spot On, Heavy Handed

Absolutely heavy handed law enforcement. They put people in jail because of paperwork? They should have told the owner to get a license, pay a fine for being late and let them continue to operate. If all the Ga Dept of Rev. has to do is these type things, their department funding needs to be cut drastically. Silly, silly, silly.

wondersnevercease
9218
Points
wondersnevercease 01/31/13 - 08:48 am
1
0
An Agent with the department
Unpublished

An Agent with the department of revenue arrested these people...not local officers............................

allhans
23471
Points
allhans 01/31/13 - 09:12 am
1
1
I think I am missing

I think I am missing something here. Didn't the guys know they needed a license. Could it be they applied for but not issued one for some reason. Just asking.

soapy_725
43598
Points
soapy_725 01/31/13 - 09:36 am
1
0
Did they have intent to do wrong?
Unpublished

That is the most important factor. Or are they merely victims of government red tape? Simply violating the LAW is not a measure of committing an ILLEGAL act in the USA. Being an illegal immigrant does not mean you are a criminal. So says the Demogog Party.

belle
303
Points
belle 01/31/13 - 09:57 am
1
0
Arrested not yet guilty
Unpublished

The officer did his job. It is his job to arrest anyone that appears guilty of an act. It is not his job to judge whether they were intentionally or knowingly committing that act. That is why we have courts.

Grace422
239
Points
Grace422 01/31/13 - 11:02 am
1
1
Wow this blows my mind..

Seems like in the past all they would do is shut the place down and fine the owners. I can recall several occurances in the past where that's all that happen. What about the place on hwy 56 when the young guy was shot and passed in the back seat of his freinds car. Was the owner & staff attrested in that incident. Seems like no license and under age drinking was invloved. Heck the girl on riverwatch pkwy will not face criminal charges, but you arrest the employees for doing a job?

jamc1103
134
Points
jamc1103 01/31/13 - 11:19 am
0
1
The owners

of this club own at least two other alcohol selling establishments that have been up and running for years without a problem. Therefore, I doubt they would have recently opened this place knowingly breaking the law and risking their other businesses. From what I understand it was a mix up of all the bureaucratic paperwork and the club is already planning to open back up.

Riverman1
81319
Points
Riverman1 01/31/13 - 11:32 am
1
0
Jamc1103

That explains a lot. It is absolutely a travesty to have arrested and jailed these people. Someone needs to reel in these state employees flexing their muscle. Do you mean to tell me they couldn't have gotten the owners to get the license with a simple conversation? It gives new meaning to the line, "I'm from the government and I'm here to help you."

Riverman1
81319
Points
Riverman1 01/31/13 - 11:37 am
0
0
Know what I've learned over

Know what I've learned over my life. When you sweeten things up when dealing with any level of government bureaucrat things go well, when you don't things go poorly.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Weekly crime map, database

Violent crimes for the past week included 102 assaults, four of which was classified as aggravated assaults. The most assaults in a single day, 22, occurred on Aug. 17.
Search Augusta jobs