Sad news for fans of live music in Spokane, WA. After a series of shootings outside the city’s outpost of the venerable Knitting Factory venue, city officials have revoked the space’s license, at least temporarily shutting down operations. The Spokesman-Review is reporting that local police had given the venue fair warning about the need to curb violent offenses associated with the space after having already responded to four separate shootings there this year. The two apparently gang-related events that took place on Sunday night pushed the department over the edge, with Police Chief Frank Straub stating, “We will not tolerate these acts of violence.”
While the shootings didn’t take place inside the music venue, they occurred after a third-party-hosted DJ showcase that we’re assuming the police think the culprits attended. What the venue could have done to prevent violent actions outside of its doors is unclear, but Spokane authorities seem to think that giving young people fewer places to go is a good solution to the problem of gang violence on the street. The Knitting Factory has 20 days to appeal the decision and they appear to be in the process of doing so, noting in an official statement that it’s “difficult to control what might happen outside the venue after the concert has ended…” While the venue’s site has their Friday show listed as cancelled, all shows beyond that date appear to still be happening.
• The Knitting Factory Spokane: http://sp.knittingfactory.com