After years of neighbors’ attempting to do something about the behavior outside a South Side convenience store, the business has closed. Gina’s Drive Thru at 1942 Glenwood Ave. had a lot of people who loitered outside of the business. They would drink liquor in the open, and people often were seen urinating outside during the middle of the day, said Ian J. Beniston, deputy director of the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corp. There also were a number of quick exchanges between people in the parking lot, indicating suspicious behavior. This activity occurred continually over several years.
“The neighborhood group had attempted to work with the owners. They specifically asked them to stop selling alcohol to the people who continuously loitered around the store,” he said.
A phone number could not be found for Saud Y. Jundi, who is the owner of the property, according to Ohio Division of Liquor Control records.
The real work to close the drive-through was done by the residents, including the Idora Block Watch, who were willing to testify about activity at the business and worked toward the nonrenewal of Gina’s liquor license, said Paul Drennen, Youngstown’s 5th Ward councilman.
Drennen said he objected to the liquor- permit renewal, based on the drinking, drug use and other criminal activity that was going on near the business.
The drive-through had appealed the ruling but canceled its appeal before the April 12 hearing date, Beniston said.
“The business had packed up and closed about two weeks before that,” Beniston said.
The company knew it wasn’t going to win the fight for a license renewal, Drennen said. There isn’t a concerted effort to remove all places that sell liquor, he noted.
“There are several other businesses in the Glenwood corridor that sell alcohol that we haven’t went after. We want good business in the Glenwood corridor,” he said.
The nonrenewal prevents Gina’s from reopening with a liquor license for the next year. The next step for that neighborhood probably is to get an issue on the ballot in November to make that precinct dry, Drennen said.