LAWRENCE — A noise complaint led police to what they described as an illegal bar, with both alcohol and a hookah smoking system, in the basement of a multi-family apartment house on Boxford Street, according to a police report.
The home's owner, Joel Maria Santos, 20, was arrested and charged as the keeper of a noisy and disorderly house at 155 Boxford St. after a noise complaint was called into police at 4:42 a.m. Monday, according to the report.
Investigating officers said they could hear loud music from two houses away.
At 155 Boxford St., with music blaring from the house, an officer could also hear people yelling inside. After she knocked several times on the door, the noise was abruptly silenced and then "I heard several voices saying, 'shhh, shhh,'" Officer Jessica Botero wrote in her incident report.
No one immediately answered the door so Botero called for back up. Four other officers soon arrived.
An elderly woman who lived on the second floor of the building told the officers she "is forced to wear ear plugs."
Without causing damage to the door, police were able to make their way into the basement and found the illegal bar, according to the report.
People were sitting in chairs drinking, hookahs and hookah components were being used in the basement and a duct ventilator through a window was constructed "and used to filter out large amounts of smoke." Two women who were dressed alike were standing behind what appeared to be a bar, Botero wrote.
"The basement contained large bright colored lights," she added.
Everyone was told to leave the basement immediately by police.
Santos soon after told police the two women behind the bar were "bartenders," according to the report.
Police said there have been more than nine noise-related incidents at 155 Boxford St. and that Santos "has been aware of the loud music and parties held in his basement," according to the report.
The report indicated Santos was arrested. Arraignment information for him was not available at Lawrence District Court on Tuesday morning.
Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter @EagleTribJill.