City sets date for hearing on Applejax club license

Photo by J.D. Sumner

Photo by J.D. Sumner

ALBANY, Ga. -- The Albany City Commission has voted unanimously to move forward with an effort to scrutinize the operations of an Albany club where two men were killed earlier this year.

City Attorney Nathan Davis says he believes the city has a strong enough case against the owners of Applejax Lounge to move forward with a hearing to determine if the commission should revoke the bar's liquor license.

That hearing has been set for the commission's April 19 work session.

Jerro Toye, 23, and Joshua O'Neal Walls, 22, were stabbed to death with a steak knife by Willie Frank Lowe, 42, at about 2:40 a.m. March 3 on a grassy area behind the bar's parking lot.

A Dougherty County grand jury cleared Lowe of any criminal act associated with the killing, determining that he acted in self-defense.

Dougherty District Attorney Greg Edwards said that Toye and Walls were trying to rob Lowe when he stabbed both of them to death.

While Davis was careful not to reveal too much of the city's case against Applejax, he did tell commissioners that he believes the law is clear when it comes to the fact that the men were killed in the parking lot rather than inside the bar -- either way, he said, the licensees are responsible.

During discussion, commissioners also pointed to a previous incident at that site where a person was shot to death in the parking lot.

Davis told commissioners that in 2006 that a man was killed during a fight among patrons at what was then a pool hall which was owned and operated by a different licensee.