Hookah Bar Bouncer Charged After Firing ‘Warning Shot’

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Richard Dion
Richard Dion

Richard Dion, 28, of Salem, a bouncer at the Crazy Camel Hookah and Cigar Lounge, 245 Maple St., is charged with felony reckless conduct after he allegedly fired his handgun into the air to disperse an “unruly” crowd.

At about 1 a.m. on July 6 police arrived to the Crazy Camel for a report of a large fight of unruly patrons and the bar’s owner, Tarek Gomaa, 46, of Manchester.

Manchester Police Officer Kevin Jusza spoke with Dion who told him that a group of patrons entered the bar earlier in the night and continued to be disruptive throughout the evening. He also claimed the unruly behavior by the four men, whose names were not released by police, caused the bar owner to close at 12:45 a.m. The early closing may have contributed to the altercation, police said.

Dion claimed he was moving additional patrons from the inside of the bar when he saw a crowd gathering outside in the parking lot. He realized it was the same group of patrons, along with Gomaa, so he ran outside and fired a “warning shot” from his Glock .357 handgun, he said, to prevent the altercation from escalating. Once he fired the shot, the crowd dispersed and police arrived.

Dion was ultimately charged with reckless conduct (felony) for discharging his firearm in a way that could have caused harm to himself or others. His weapon was submitted into evidence and he was transported to police headquarters.

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Journalist and editor of ManchesterInkLink.com, a hyperlocal news and information site for Manchester, NH.