Closed

Scores Sports Bar and Grille in downtown Keene, as seen in early May.

Amid a lawsuit alleging he owes unpaid rent, the owner of a popular Keene bar that closed in the spring has filed for bankruptcy for himself and the business.

The company that owns the now-shuttered Scores Sports Bar and Grille filed June 12 for chapter 7 bankruptcy, which liquidates the debtor’s assets and distributes the proceeds to creditors.

Roughly a month later, its proprietor, John C. Brewster of Gilsum, filed for chapter 13 bankruptcy, which allows a debtor to keep their personal property and set up a payment plan for their debts.

Both cases are in the state district of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

A notice of Brewster’s personal bankruptcy filing was entered July 25 into the record of a pending lawsuit by Andy Sanborn, owner of Campy LLC and the landlord at 82 Main St.

In a complaint lodged against both Brewster and the business May 22 in Cheshire County Superior Court, Sanborn — a former state senator — accused Brewster of paying partial rent for the space in March and skipping out completely in April and May. The two had a verbal lease agreement, Sanborn wrote, asserting Brewster owed him more than $16,000.

The sports bar and late-night dance spot on Railroad Square closed April 29, when the N.H. Liquor Commission Division of Enforcement and Licensing temporarily revoked the business’ liquor license for 10 alleged violations from September through April, including serving alcohol to minors and people who were visibly intoxicated.

Though Brewster told The Sentinel in May he had evidence to disprove the allegations, a hearing before the commission was postponed at his request, according to a commission spokesman. (Brewster declined to comment about this when asked by The Sentinel May 24.)

Brewster voluntarily surrendered Scores’ license via email May 25, a week before the rescheduled hearing, the spokesman told a reporter.

Scores’ bankruptcy filing says the business owes $304,734 to about 25 creditors. That includes a $200,000 debt to Brad Leighton for a “personal note on business.” Leighton’s son, Nicholas, co-founded Scores in 2014 and owned it until Brewster took over in 2018.

Other debts include $6,400 to the liquor commission and $30,382 to the N.H. Department of Revenue Administration, which collects taxes in the state.

In his personal bankruptcy filing, Brewster indicated that his debts are primarily business-related. He’s also listed as a co-debtor to Scores for four creditors: Sanborn, the state of New Hampshire, U.S. Foods and QuickBridge, a small-business lender.

Scores’ filing notes that the business holds personal items that belong to Brewster and “other former employees.” The documents also include a list of the business’ assets, which include glassware, tables, chairs, coolers, refrigerators, frozen goods, televisions, a sound system and security equipment.

In one section, a box is checked indicating that Scores’ property needs “immediate attention” because it includes perishable goods.

It’s unclear from the filing if any of these items are still inside 82 Main St.

Brewster declined to comment on the lawsuit or on the bankruptcy filings. Sanborn, Wednesday, could not be reached for comment.

Sierra Hubbard can be reached at 355-8546 or at shubbard@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter at @SierraHubbardKS.