Sunday fight under police investigation
A fight took place in Washington early Sunday morning.
According to the Washington Communications Center call log, several calls were received about a large fight outside of 4th Avenue Bar & Grill at about 2:01 a.m. At least one injury was reported; however, no one was transported to the hospital.
Washington Police Chief Greg Goodman said the investigation into the incident is ongoing. He declined to give any further details at this time. The Journal will bring you more information as it becomes available.
Incidents at 4th Avenue Bar & Grill have happened before.
In November 2009, Robert Thomas Blankenship was found unconscious at the 4th Avenue Bar & Grill. He was taken to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and was later pronounced dead.
At a press conference outside of the Washington Police Department on April 15, 2010, Washington County Attorney Barbara Edmondson and Washington Police Chief Greg Goodman said Blankenship’s death was the result of a fight that took place at the 4th Avenue Bar & Grill. About 15 to 30 people were involved in the fight.
Brandon Eichler, of Michigan, who was in Washington as part of a construction crew, was at the bar and possibly tried to stop the fight. Blankenship attacked Eichler during the fight and Eichler hit Blankenship once on the right side of the head. Eichler then left the bar. Blankenship was still conscious at the time and trying to fight. He then collapsed, and was found to be unresponsive, Edmondson said at the press conference.
In May 2010, a safety meeting was held regarding bar violence and alcohol consumption. Goodman said at the meeting that Blankenship had a blood alcohol level of 0.31 the night he died. He said the bars needed to monitor more closely the intoxication level of bar patrons.
At the Washington City Council meeting on Nov. 2, 2010, the 4th Avenue Bar & Grill’s liquor license was renewed but not unanimously. Councilor Karen Wilson-Johnson voted no, and councilor Mike Roth abstained because of conflict of interest.