Middletown Police: 1 dead in hookah lounge shooting

Officers located a 20-year-old New Britain man suffering from a gunshot wound in the parking lot.
Published: May. 21, 2023 at 6:54 AM EDT|Updated: May. 23, 2023 at 12:30 AM EDT
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MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (WFSB) - Middletown police are investigating a deadly shooting, according to officials.

The shooting occurred around 4 a.m. Sunday morning in the parking lot of Hidden Hookah Lounge at 659 South Main Street.

Police said the incident began inside the lounge and continued into the parking lot.

Officers found a 20-year-old New Britain man suffering from a gunshot wound in the parking lot.

Police and EMS arrived quickly and attempted to treat the man, but he was later pronounced deceased.

The victim was identified as Jonathan Semidey Jr.

The shooting happened as the lounge closed for the night.

“Evidence of multiple rounds fired was discovered however at this time no witnesses have been located,” Middletown police said.

Police say this isn’t the first time this location has had an incident. Eyewitness News obtained police records detailing around 90 calls were made to the lounge in the past year.

“We’ve had noise complaints, complaints from the community in regards to garbage. We’ve had other shootings that occurred, not at the location not at the bar but elsewhere leaving there. That place has been the nexus. Those are things the business isn’t necessarily at fault for but it’s been at the center of that,” said Middletown chief of police Eric Costa.

Eyewitness News spoke with several surrounding businesses off camera that say the Hidden Lounge’s reputation is known throughout the community. They say the lounge is known for late night noises and fights.

Costa says the lounge will be closed for the net few weeks while police and town officials determine their future.

Some neighbors tell Eyewitness News that they would like to see the business closed for good.

“On the other side there are residential neighborhoods which concerns us and that’s why we’re working together with our city stake holders to identify zoning and what’s best for the city,” said Costa.

Police ask anyone with information related to this investigation to contact Middletown police at (860) 638-4140.

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