MACON, Ga. — Editors Note: The video in this article is from previous coverage of Macon-Bibb County requesting the Thirsty Turtle to surrender its license.
The Thirsty Turtle officially surrendered its alcohol license to Macon-Bibb County, Mayor Lester Miller confirmed by text with 13WMAZ.
We reached out to the owner of the Thirsty Turtle, Tim Obelgoner, he did not respond.
According to a letter sent to the Mayor, Obelgoner’s Lawyer Charles Cox gave over the license on Thursday.
This comes after the commission voted earlier this month giving Obelgoner an ultimatum: surrender the license or the county would revoke the license.
That vote follows two deadly shootings near the downtown Macon bar in the last year.
On Black Friday 2020, a shooting along Cherry Street left one woman dead and seven others injured. The Bibb County Sheriff’s Office says it started with a fight either inside or outside of the Thirsty Turtle.
They say a vehicle drove down Cherry Street, shooting into the crowd of people outside the club.
Less than 24 hours later, Sheriff David Davis suspended their alcohol license.
The order suspended alcohol sales for 90 days. In that time, the Sheriff’s Office reviewed the bar’s operations.
The Commission didn’t act in that instance, so the bar received its license back.
Then, in summer 2021, another shooting on Cherry Street that left two people dead and two others injured.
Sheriff Davis says a fight began near the Thirsty Turtle. Shots were fired and then the chaos moved down the street toward A Brooke Haven Lounge.
“We had a fight inside. We pushed them outside and apparently someone was waiting on the corner of Cherry Street with a gun already. As the fight from the club came outside, it kind of intertwined with what was going on outside,” said Thirsty Turtle general manager, Matthew Obelgoner.
The sheriff’s office suspended the bar’s alcohol license again after that shooting in July.
Because Obelgoner suspended his license within the 30 days, it is legal for a similar business, like a bar or club, to buy the space.