Pubdate: Mon, 26 Jun 2000
Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI)
Copyright: 2000, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Contact:  414-224-8280
Author: Kevin Murphy
Related: and


Drug Suspect Won't Fight To Retain Liquor License

Madison - The owner of a downtown tavern that federal authorities described
as "an indoor open drug market" has closed the establishment and will let
his liquor license be revoked, a city official said.

Robert Schuh, 49, owner and president of Jocko's Rocket Ship Lounge, located
off State St., and four of his bartenders were indicted in March on multiple
drug offenses, including distribution of cocaine and operating a drug house.

Twelve city firefighters under suspicion of using or buying cocaine or
marijuana at Jocko's have been suspended with pay.

The city "moved with unprecedented speed" to revoke Schuh's liquor license,
and, although Schuh's bail conditions prohibited his being involved in
Jocko's, he had planned to vigorously defend his license, Ald. Tim Bruer

However, Schuh decided last week to give up the fight, Bruer said.

"There were strong sentiments throughout City Hall and the community that if
the allegations were proven true at the revocation hearing, then this
business poses a danger to the health and safety of the community," said
Bruer, chairman of the Common Council's Alcohol License Review Committee.

Bruer said Schuh had asked him about trying to transfer his license to
another businessman, but Bruer advised against it.

"Allowing that would be essentially condoning what allegedly took place at
Jocko's, and no license holder should be able to profit from illegal
activities associated with their business," Bruer said.

Jocko's landlord, Greg Hinckley, began eviction proceedings against Schuh,
but proceedings were halted after Schuh agreed to remove his property from
the bar this week and vacate the premises, Bruer said.

Schuh and his attorney, Charles Giesen, could not be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, a former Jocko's bartender, John R. Salmon, 49, pleaded guilty
last week to conspiring to operate a drug house while employed at Jocko's.
As part of the plea deal, Salmon agreed to testify against Schuh and the
seven other defendants at a trial in August.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Doc-Hawk