Sancho’s Broken Arrow cited for violating coronavirus stay-at-home order

Sancho’s Broken Arrow, photographed April 27, 2020 in Denver. (Beth Rankin, The Denver Post)

Capitol Hill bar Sancho’s Broken Arrow has received a notice from the city requiring it to be vacated immediately and remain empty until the city’s stay-at-home order is lifted.

The news, first shared last week by Westword, follows a visit from police that found the Grateful Dead-themed bar in violation of Denver Department of Public Health and Environment’s order requiring hospitality establishments to be empty during the coronavirus shutdown.

Owner Jay Biachi did not immediately respond to phone and online requests for comment.

However, in a Monday morning Facebook post, he seemed to address allegations that he opened the bar last week to the public — saying it was only him inside listening to music at top volume, and not any members of the public.

“It is weird to think that someone would be cranking Grateful Dead upstairs celebrating quarantine with his stuffed friends the Grateful Dead Bears when he is in the basement drinking tea and writing about music or probably listening to another show on a computer that someone sent him a link to and thereby would not hear anyone knocking on the door,” he wrote.

A notice posted on the door at Sancho’s Broken Arrow threatens arrest for people who violate Denver’s stay-at-home order. (Beth Rankin, The Denver Post)

The city’s citation, posted at 741 E. Colfax Ave. on April 24, noted that violators are subject to arrest.

“This establishment shall be vacated immediately and remain vacant until a representative of the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment rescinds this order in writing and removes this placard except for the allowance of filling online orders that shall be shipped via mail or delivered in accordance with physical distancing restrictions,” read the sign on Sancho’s door.

As noted, the sign stems from an April 23 visit in which police attempted to contact Bianchi by knocking on the door while hearing loud music being played inside, Westword reported.

“I was in there,” Bianchi told Westword. “I was doing Facebook and stuff and looking at the computer and whatever. I go upstairs and downstairs, and I was playing music loud. They knocked on the door, but I didn’t hear it.”

Bianchi, who according to Westword lives in the space above Sancho’s, also owns and operates the similarly jam-band-themed Denver bar/venues Be on Key Psychedelic Ripple and Quixotes True Blue.

“Perhaps this person was happy experiencing his place as if it was truely (sic) his space,” Bianchi wrote on Facebook Monday, before quoting the Grateful Dead’s “Box of Rain.” “Now perhaps you explain that to a police officer and perhaps they will believe you. Well, believe it if you need it, leave it if you dare!”

This is a developing story that will be updated when new information is available.

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter, In The Know, to get entertainment news sent straight to your inbox.