Loved ones of a teenager who was found dead in South Jersey are calling for the permanent closure of the nightclub he visited prior to his death.
Irving Mayren-Guzman, 19, was visiting Centerfolds Cabaret on 201 East Delilah Road in Pleasantville, New Jersey, during the early morning hours of January 23. According to police and court records, security staffers at the club escorted Mayren-Guzman outside. He was in the parking lot of the club when he was attacked by three men, investigators said.
“We do know that there was an altercation outside. A fight,” Pleasantville Acting Police Chief James Williams said. “We don't know what started the fight. We don't know if the parties knew one another.”
Get Philly local news, weather forecasts, sports and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC Philadelphia newsletters.
The three men seriously injured Mayren-Guzman, striking him with a closed fist and kicking him in the face and body while he was on the ground, according to court documents. Police said Mayren-Guzman then ran away from the business minutes later. He was reported missing later that day.
On January 25, around 9:30 a.m., Mayren-Guzman’s body was found in a marshy area just east of Centerfolds.
“It still hurts,” Eduardo Alvarez, Mayren-Guzman’s brother, told NBC10. “It hurts a lot. It hurts having to hear my mom cry.”
Police later identified the three men who attacked Mayren-Guzman as 30-year-old Jamaul Timberlake of Atlantic City, 24-year-old John Hands of Pleasantville and 29-year-old Garnell Hands of Pleasantville. The three men were arrested on January 26 and charged with aggravated assault and other related offenses. They were not charged with murder however and officials still have not revealed a cause of death for Mayren-Guzman.
Breaking news and the stories that matter to your neighborhood.
A sign on the door of Centerfolds indicates the club is closed until further notice. NBC10 obtained a letter sent to the club revealing its mercantile license had been suspended pending the result of a court hearing set to take place in a few weeks. The letter stated police determined Mayren-Guzman had been served alcohol at Centerfolds despite being under 21. Police have also responded to the club for various incidents over the years.
“We did have an underage drinker in there and then a life lost, and that’s a very serious offense,” Pleasantville Mayor Judy Ward said. “So I really have to think about that a little bit more, as far as, is that the kind of business we want in Pleasantville?”
Wednesday night, loved ones of Mayren-Guzman marched through Pleasantville demanding transparency from the mayor’s office in the investigation. They also gathered outside Centerfolds, demanding that the club be shut down for good.
“If I see that someone has too much to drink, I’m going to make sure they have an Uber, or a cab, or a designated driver,” Alvarez said. “I’m going to make sure I’m carding everybody right.”
NBC10 reached out to Centerfolds for comment. We have not yet heard back from them.