The co-owner of a popular nightclub in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has resigned amidst accusations of sexual misconduct on the job.
In a Facebook post this week, the Middle East announced that Joseph Sater, who has run the business with his family for decades, would be stepping down.
"After 44 years, Joseph Sater has decided to retire from managing the Middle East Restaurant and Nightclub," the post stated.
The decision came after several posts on social media accused Sater of inappropriate behavior, prompting bands and entertainers to cancel their shows at the venue.
"We had been booking with them up until November of last year," said Heather McCormack of the Boston League of Wicked Wrestlers.
While no complaint has been filed with Cambridge Police, McCormack said she trusted the numerous accounts that were posted online, as well as reiterated within the community's music circle.
"I'd like to see the venue be able to recover," McCormack said. "But it has to be totally and completely changed, unfortunately."
In response, the club defended Sater. While he has left, they argue there is no proof to substantiate the claims against him.
"It's been challenging to find an appropriate way to respond to unsubstantiated third-party claims on social media," the club wrote. "We can say, unequivocally, that the allegations being spread online are absolutely not true and that just being publicly accused is absolutely devastating."
Sater's family will continue to operate the club. However, McCormack has no plans to bring back her business yet.
"Systemically, it has not been a safe place for a long time," Mccormack said. "I'm not putting him on trial. I'm choosing to take my business elsewhere, and that's what I think other people are doing, too."