Iconic Beersheba club closed for three weeks after stabbing

Iconic Beersheba club closed for three weeks after stabbing

Judge finds club owners and security did not report violent incident to authorities and did not call paramedics

Illustrative photo of a nightclub scene (Zuzana Janku/Flash90)
Illustrative photo of a nightclub scene (Zuzana Janku/Flash90)

A popular Beersheba nightclub was ordered closed for three weeks on Friday, after the owners and security personnel failed to report a stabbing a few days earlier.

The incident, which occurred late Wednesday night at the Forum, an all-ages venue considered to be one of the most popular dance clubs in the country, saw a teenaged patron beaten and stabbed during an altercation in the men’s bathroom, police said. The youth suffered a broken nose and a knife wound in the thigh.

Club security responded to the fight within moments and provided some form of first aid to the victim, but the incident was not, as the law requires, reported to the police, and paramedics were not called. The victim was later taken to the hospital by his family, who reported the altercation.

During a Friday hearing in Beersheba, when the decision was made to temporarily close the club, the president judge said the club management displayed a “significant failure” by not reporting the incident.

The Forum first opened in 1988 and grew to become one of the country’s premier dance music venues and the largest and most popular nightclub in southern Israel. Several weeks ago the club moved to a new location, a sprawling two-acre, four-floor compound which required a NIS 15 million ($4.25 m.) investment, according to a report in the Haaretz daily.

The opening party for the new location was canceled as a result of the closing. In a statement, the Forum’s owners decried the violence and said the management would work with the police with full transparency on the case, and would “return to full activity in the coming days.”

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