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Owner of Fairfield Hookah Lounge Arrested [UPDATED]

Casablanca Hookah Lounge on the Post Road was shut down Monday due to fire code violations, among other things. The owner was arrested on Wednesday after attempting to break in to the lounge, police said.

[Editor's Note: Arrest information is supplied by the Fairfield Police Department. It does not indicate convictions.]

[Editor's Note, Part II: This was originally published on Jan. 19; the publication date was changed for layout purposes.]

Updated Story, Jan. 27

Jaled Gorra, 41, owner of Casablanca Hookah Lounge at 86 Post Road, was served a warrant by Fairfield police on Thursday in connection to an investigation of underage drinking that reportedly took place at the lounge.

According to police, four teens (all under 16) entered the hookah lounge late on Sunday, Jan. 15, and openly consumed hard alcohol and smoked marijuana. Hookah lounges are not issued liquor permits: one must be 18 to legally enter and smoke, and patrons may bring their own alcohol.

The investigation was initiated after patrol officers were called to the lounge for an unrelated incident and witnessed the teens leaving Casablanca, police said. The case was referred to the Youth Bureau for follow up.

Gorra was charged with four counts of risk of injury to a minor, possession of narcotics, and permitting a minor to access alcohol, according to the police report.

Gorra was held in lieu of a $5,000 bond; his court date is Feb. 6.

Original Story, Jan. 19

Jaled Gorra, 41, of Grasmere Avenue and owner of Casablanca Hookah Lounge at 86 Post Road, was arrested Wednesday afternoon after he reportedly tried to break into the lounge, police said.

Fire department officials had shut down the smoking lounge on Monday following a call to police regarding suspected underage drinking at the lounge, department spokesperson Sgt. Sue Lussier said. The complainant believed there were 15 and 16-year-old girls drinking on the premises, according to the report.

Police arrived and stopped a car with two or three girls leaving the parking lot -- it appeared they had been drinking, according to the report. No arrests were made, but police are investigating the claims of underage drinking.

Police called the fire department to inspect the lounge; it was promptly shut down due to health and safety violations, Lussier said.

The lounge does not have a liquor license, according to police. You must be 18 to enter and smoke

Lussier said that the department has received 32 calls about Casablanca since July 2010, including general investigations to reports of harassment, noise complaints, and reports of assault, larcenies, narcotics violations, and breach of peace.

That log of calls does not include previous calls about Gorra, who has been reported to police several times before this arrest, Lussier said.

This time, the owner of the business next door reportedly saw Gorra attempting to enter Casablanca by smashing the glass on the front door, Lussier said. She called the building’s landlord, who called police.

When the responding officer arrived, Gorra said he needed to get into the building to get medication, Lussier said. There was glass all over the inside of the entrance to the lounge, according to the report.

Gorra was charged with disorderly conduct, Lussier said. He was detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, because his status as a U.S. citizen is unclear, Lussier said. Gorra was issued a Jan. 23 court date.

Phil Konigsberg January 21, 2012 at 06:45 AM
I am curious to know why the two or three girls who were reportedly drinking and then leaving the parking lot (presumably one was driving) were not detained as possible DUI/DWI suspects. Also, I am curious if the owner of the Casablanca Lounge or the person who reportedly served drinks to underage customers was issued a violation. It seems the liquor license cannot be revoked or suspended in this situation because they apparently did not have one in the first place but appear to have been serving liquor anyway.
John Doe January 30, 2012 at 09:17 AM
I'm curious how the only question you have after reading this is why didn't the girls get arrested for drunk driving. Seriously!? This man has been allowing children to consumer alcohol and drugs, putting their lives at risk and all you can do is sit there and wonder why one of the girls who you say must have been driving weren't arrested. Read the article again and you will see that it says all four girls were under 16 years old...meaning too young to have a license to begin with. So, presumably, there was someone else driving the vehicle. And obviously something is being done about the issue of alcohol being served to minors if the man has even arrested and Immigration is now involved. People on this site need to start reading (and comprehending) prior to posting.
Frederick Klein January 30, 2012 at 04:06 PM
I'm curious about this whole hookah thing. People purposely go to a place to engage in a mass smoke-in? And you smoke out of one of those contraptions like the caterpillar in "Alice in Wonderland"?
Fairfield Resident January 30, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Here you go Fred..............All you ever wanted to know about hookahs: http://www.google.com/
Fairfield Resident January 30, 2012 at 04:45 PM
Dear John Doe: Where in the article does it say children were "consuming drugs"? Nice try. Have a Blessed Day!
Brad Sherman January 30, 2012 at 10:10 PM
fairfield resident, in the second paragraph it says they consumed marijuana. Here I wil copy and paste it for you....."According to police, four teens (all under 16) entered the hookah lounge late on Sunday, Jan. 15, and openly consumed hard alcohol and smoked marijuana." Alcohol and marijuana and both considered drugs, but I am sure you knew that. Now you mr. fairfield resident you have a blessed day!
Pi January 31, 2012 at 10:43 AM
John Doe, You do realize Phil posted his comment before The Patch updated the story correct? This is what he was referring to: "The complainant believed there were 15 and 16-year-old girls drinking on the premises, according to the report. Police arrived and stopped a car with two or three girls leaving the parking lot -- it appeared they had been drinking, according to the report. No arrests were made, but police are investigating the claims of underage drinking." Phil asked a very legitimate question. Just because they are minors doesn't excuse them from the law. Yes, if he is in fact guilty, the owner should bear the most of the responsibility but these young women should also be held accountable for their actions.
Pi January 31, 2012 at 10:47 AM
Frederick, a hookah lounge is a place for a group of friends to sit around smoking shisha, a flavored tobacco, out of a hookah. Yes, a hookah was in Alice in Wonderland. It consists of a bowl on top where the shisha is added, hot coals or a flame is put on top and the smoke is drawn down through some water and out the smoking tubes.
Frederick Klein January 31, 2012 at 10:50 PM
Pi - It sounds absolutely revolting.
Pi January 31, 2012 at 11:30 PM
It's not for everyone but some people really enjoy it.
Fairfield Resident February 01, 2012 at 01:10 AM
Wrong Brad................... It says they "Smoked" marijuana.....not "Consumed"................Nice try..... Have a Blessed Day!!!
John Doe February 02, 2012 at 04:54 PM
I'm not even going to waste my time rebutting anything. Read the police reports...none of the females were driving, another person not mentioned was, and they admitted to using drugs and drinking alcohol. What's the bigger issue the fact that a kid drank and smoked (wow real shock there) or the fact that some illegal immigrant was serving alcohol to minors and providing them with drugs. Look at the Big picture here please.
Brad Sherman February 03, 2012 at 06:04 PM
fairfield resident, I guess if you want to split hairs the word consumed was not used in the story about under age girls and their use of marijuana. But the marijuana I imagine was consumed because after the under age girls were done smoking the marijuana I assume it was gone, that would constitute it being consumed. Also the BATF considers alcohol a drug and they did consume that too. Just two different methods of consuming. Now that we are both having blessed days lets go out side and consume some God given fresh air and sunshine! Amen.

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