Arkansas Nightclub Sued Over July Shooting That Injured 28

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (CN) – The Little Rock nightclub where 28 concertgoers suffered injuries in a mass shooting reportedly spurred by gang activity during a concert by rapper Finese2Tymes was sued Tuesday by one of the injured attendees, who says chaos erupted when gunshots were fired from all directions.

Patrick Hardy of Little Rock claims in a lawsuit filed in Pulaski County Circuit Court that he was shot in the arm while celebrating his 29th birthday when gunfire broke out at the now-shuttered Power Ultra Lounge on the early morning hours of July 1.

Hardy says he was ultimately forced to jump out of a second-story window and onto an awning to escape the gunfire.

He sued Power Kitchen & Bar Inc. dba Power Ultra Lounge and its operator, Herman Lewis, on Tuesday. Building owner 6th & Center LLC was also named in Hardy’s lawsuit, which gives dramatic new details of the shooting.

According to Hardy’s complaint, gunshots erupted inside the downtown Little Rock nightclub mid-song from seemingly every direction, causing terrified patrons to chaotically search for exits.

“A bullet strikes plaintiff in his arm. The single stairwell leading to the ground floor quickly swells with bodies and becomes clogged. The single fire escape is flooded with terrified people as well,” Hardy says in his 15-page complaint.

The lawsuit goes on to says that people were trampled over and slammed “violently together in the desperate push toward safety” as shrieks and “screams of pain” could be heard.

Police were summoned to the Little Rock nightclub at about 2:30 a.m. that morning to a chaotic scene after an 11-second volley of gunfire shattered the night. Authorities blame a clash among clubgoers and gang activity for the incident.

Hardy’s attorney Josh Gillispie said in a statement on Tuesday that Power Ultra Lounge operated as a nightclub and concert venue without proper zoning and licensing, and despite multiple police incidents.

“Shockingly, 6th & Center LLC allowed the Power Ultra Lounge to remain in operation despite 48 police incidents in just two years, including ten violent crimes and multiple shooting incidents,” Gillispie said. “The defendants’ refusal to address repeated criminal activity and improve their security efforts led to 28 people being gunned down or otherwise injured and made to suffer physical, emotional, and financial trauma and loss.”

A phone number listed for Power Ultra Lounge was not in service and its owner could not be reached for comment Tuesday. The nightclub’s liquor license was suspended shortly after the shooting and has been permanently shut down.

Ricky Hampton, also known as Finese2Tymes, pleaded not guilty to federal firearm charges unrelated to the Little Rock shooting. U.S. Marshals arrested him outside of an Alabama club about 24 hours after his rap performance at the Power Ultra Lounge.

Hardy seeks compensatory and punitive damages for clams of negligence, deceptive and unconscionable trade practices, medical expenses, pain and suffering and lost wages resulting from the incident.

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