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Letter to the Editor: In Wake of Adam McCloud's Death, Family Supports Tougher Alcohol Ordinance

Larry Odebrecht says his "belief (and hope) is that Adam’s death will be a wake-up call for those institutions who have been harboring ill-tempered patrons, but if they choose not to respond appropriately the police need tools to help make cha

It's been six weeks since my brother-in-law (Adam McCloud) was killed in a downtown bar in Stillwater. Our family is still struggling (as you would expect from a family that lost a brother, son, and uncle), but we have been comforted by the wonderful community that Stillwater and Bayport have proven to be. You have cried along with us and we are truly sorry for your pain as well. 

Stillwater has proven to be so much more than a city and has redefined my definition of community. The outpouring of support has touched all of us. Businesses have held (and helped with) fundraisers, the police have been thoughtful and helped direct us through uncharted waters, and the County Attorney and his office have been a source of support and comfort as they prosecute Adam’s case. Our neighbors made our meals and continue to give us shoulders to cry on, and our clergy offer us wisdom and help us see through this to the larger context. 

One of the better things to come out of this tragedy is a common sense tool that City Council is putting in the hands of the police to ensure that establishments that hold liquor licenses uphold their part of the bargain and police their restaurant and bar. The proposed change would leverage citations to give notice to the bar after 6 incidents, but could eventually end in suspension if the course isn't corrected.  Some of the bars in downtown have not been living up to their obligation to the community to keep the peace - resulting in greater than 30 incidents. My belief (and hope) is that Adam’s death will be a wake-up call for those institutions who have been harboring ill-tempered patrons, but if they choose not to respond appropriately the police need tools to help make change happen. 

What I love about this community is that it doesn't suffer the lack of empathy so indicative of large cities. I have three small children who have grown up here with a sense of safety and security. We know our neighbors and we all pitch in with each other's children. When my kids get out of line, my neighbors feel confident in setting them straight. This is not a community where any business can (or should be allowed to) flagrantly ignore their responsibility to maintain the safety of their customers. 

Please join me in letting City Council know that you support this common sense measure. 

-- Larry Odebrecht, Stillwater

Dan November 21, 2012 at 03:04 PM
Oh, and Randy Marsh is not his real name, to be sure. That is a character on South Park.
Scott in Wisconsin November 22, 2012 at 08:01 PM
For those of you not connected to the bar industry to believe you can control and regulate how different patrons will react while drinking is rediculous. I have worked many nights as a bouncer and I can say from personal experience you never know what to expect, I have seen people I know to be calm, respectful patrons turn into complete idiots, I have seen loving married couples in all out fist fights, I have seen people going from quiet and reserved one minute to throwing punches the next. A bouncer can only do and anticipate so much, you try and keep the peace as much as you can and obviously a place like Marx is not going to have the same calls as a place like Smalley's. The actions of a patron are not always dependent on his general attitude but often on the emotional baggage he carries with him that day and as a bouncer you're often putting your life on the line for a part time job paying $10 per hour with no benefits.
Bam Granville Melba Willis November 27, 2012 at 08:07 PM
It is customary for the loved ones of the deceased to look for places to place blame no matter how misguided and I totally understand that, however at what point do you accept that your loved one played a role in the outcome? Mr. Odebrecht, can you honestly say that you could walk away from someone who repeatedly shoves you? You can't even walk away from words on a computer! You mentioned to Randy that he would'nt make the same comments to your face! If he was in your face what would your reaction be? You have decided that Eric Richard is to blame for all of this even going so far as referring to him as a Killer! When exactly are you going to start stating facts and not just your own truths? For example what was Adam's behavior in the bar that night? I ask this question because you seem to want to paint the picture that Eric maliciously went after Adam like a raging alcoholic with no motive for his actions. Are you insinuating that Eric take responsibility for both his actions and actions of Adam? Let us move beyound the bar...How many times did Adam fall and hit his head while in the hospital before he rapidly deteriorated ? Better question is what was his condition before the falls in the hospital? You talk alot about God I wonder if he is on board wth your condemnation? It is a GREAT tragedy that Adam is no longer here but we will not forfeit the life of our son so that you can feel better. I do sincerely hope that you and your family find peace. God bless yoe
Bam Granville Melba Willis November 27, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Im sorry I meant to say God bless YOU
Larry Odebrecht November 27, 2012 at 08:39 PM
Ms. Willis - I'm not involved in or commenting on the case the state has against Mr. Richard. It was a tragic night for many and I'm not involved in his prosecution. The prosecutors office would be the place to direct your comments. As I understand it, the facts of the case will be established in court. I have nothing to say about them or Mr Richard beyond that. None of the claims that you have made about Adam or Mr. Richard have come from me. That is for the court to decide. As I understand it, there is video that will shed a lot of light on the responsibility, but that is not for me to determine. As I've said in the paper, there are many family's affected by this. I'm truly sorry for the struggle your family is facing as well. I know that that is the prevailing view in my family.

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