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Ryan Passey murder: Family in battle to shut Chicago's Stourbridge

By Clare Butler | Stourbridge | News | Published:

The family of a man who was murdered at a nightclub are calling for another 1,000 signatures for the venue to close.

The petition to close Chicago's after the death of Ryan Passey, inset

Almost 3,500 people have backed a petition to shut Chicago’s in Rye Market, Stourbridge, where 24-year-old Ryan Passey was knifed to death.

Following a temporary licence suspension in the wake of the attack on August 6, Dudley Council ruled bosses could reopen the venue with tightened security measures.

However, the family of the former Stourbridge footballer are now considering an appeal against the club continuing to run if more people get behind them.

Tributes to Ryan Passey left outside Chicago's

Ryan’s girlfriend, Paige Marsh-Roberts, aged 19, said: “We want Chicago’s to close down. It is not the point that it happened in the nightclub, it is the way the situation has been handled.

“We want to get another thousand signatures to get above 4,000, to show the strength of feeling in the town against the venue.”

She added: “I would like to thank everyone who has supported us so far.”

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As it stands the licensing authority, Dudley Council, says it will not consider shutting it down following its decision for it to reopen.

The council will only look at the petition if an appeal is made by the family over the outcome of the licence review hearing.

Bosses at the club said following the attack the venue would reopen within the next two weeks.

But last night a spokesman for Deltic, which owns Chicago's, said no opening date had been set.

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Outside the club masses of flowers have been left and tributes laid in honour of football fanatic Ryan.

Hundreds of people attended a vigil for Ryan in Stourbridge

Ward councillor Nicolas Barlow, said that the powers to shut the club should be left in the hands of licensing and the police.

"I know that the petition has generated several thousand names and it is very difficult because members of the public are expressing their concerns about the perception of how safe or unsafe it is.

"But we need to remain mindful of how many people have used the club and how much it is just hearsay."

He continued: "Conditions have been put forward by the licensing panel, so I think we need to see how it develops. We can't just single it out because of this one tragic incident.

"I can understand why it has generated this feeling but the powers to shut it down should remain with the licensing and police."

Under the new conditions imposed on the nightclub, metal detection wands will now be used to search customers and checks will have to be more stringent.

Serving drinks in glasses and glass bottles has also been banned.

The number of CCTV cameras will be doubled from 16 to 32.

Clare Butler

By Clare Butler
Senior Reporter - @CButler_Star

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