As we've reported, Cold Crush, which we named Best New Bar of 2013, had been the site of violence even before Adair's tragic death. In June 2014, for example, we wrote about a shooting at the club that injured three people, one critically, at around 2:30 a.m., during a period popularly known as let-out.
The arrest affidavit for Mortis, accessible below, provides more details about the BossMan Goodie shooting. On October 10, according to the document, a fight preceded the shooting, with Adair helping a couple of security personnel to escort two men, including Mortis, outside.
At that point, Mortis allegedly headed to his car, swaddled his head in a T-shirt and returned with a gun he used to kill Adair.
Mortis wasn't supposed to have a gun, because of a past conviction for aggravated robbery.
In the wake of the slaying, Denver officials ordered Cold Crush closed as a public nuisance. The venue lost its liquor license as well.
In an interview published in Westword's music vertical, Cold Crush co-owner Brian Mathenge stressed that he was serious about security at the club; he used two police officers and five security guards, and searches were conducted inside and outside. He also noted that other local clubs have experienced shootings in the past without being shut down.
Cold Crush, though, had been singled out for ire by people in its neighborhood. Indeed, residents reportedly had been circulating a petition asking for stricter regulation of the venue earlier in 2016.
Dear Cold Crush haters, save your time and energy and just stop. It's not gonna work. The town has already decided. You are in the minority. Stop fronting and do like the young homies say and get on the WAVE. It's too late for anything else. #ThreeYearsYaBishMathenge echoed this message with one of his own:
Let's put out a petition to get Cold Crush shut down.... Because it's crackin too hard, and black and white people hang out together over there. WE DON'T LIKE THATAfter the shutdown, Cold Crush fans rallied in support of the club, and it reopened on October 20 after negotiations with the City of Denver. But its rebirth wasn't permanent. Cold Crush's landlord didn't renew the venue's lease, and it closed last Halloween — and suggestions that it would reopen at the East Colfax location occupied by Southside Bar didn't come to fruition.
As for Mortis, he was originally charged with first-degree murder, as well as possession of a weapon by a previous offender. But last August, he took a deal, pleading guilty to second-degree murder. His sentencing to four decades in stir took place yesterday, January 29.
Click to read the Harold Mortis arrest affidavit.