'When did a part-time job become so dangerous?' Boot mass stabbing under NOPD investigation – NOLA.com

The Boot, a popular college bar, located at the corner of Zimpel and Broadway streets in New Orleans, La., Friday, Sept. 6, 2019.
The Boot, a popular college bar, located at the corner of Zimpel and Broadway streets in New Orleans, La., Friday, Sept. 6, 2019.
New Orleans police on Wednesday continued probing a mass stabbing at the popular Uptown college bar The Boot on Mardi Gras morning that the business’ management characterized as an unjustified attack on its staff.
By Wednesday afternoon, officers hadn’t made any arrests in connection with the violence that erupted when employees of the bar in the 1000 block of Broadway Street denied entry to a 39-year-old man at about 8 a.m. Tuesday. They said the case required “further investigation.” 
In a preliminary description of the case released Wednesday, police listed six men injured, including the man some described as wielding the knife: two 21-year-olds, a 26-year-old, a 31-year-old, and two 39-year-olds. At least four of the men suffered cutting injuries that were not considered life-threatening, police added.
Officers haven’t said much about how the victims at the bar were injured, except that one of the 39-year-old men had left the bar and tried to re-enter when employees stopped him at the door. That set off a fight that led to the injuries, police said without elaborating.
However, both The Boot’s management and the mother of one of its injured employees, Tulane University student Trace Oldner, accused the man who was denied entry of stabbing the staffers with a knife.
Oldner’s mother, Shelly Gilardi, said bar staff became concerned about the attacker after he made unwelcomed advances to women inside the bar and appeared to be under the influence of some sort of substance. When a doorman prevented him from going back inside, the man shoved the doorman, prompting other employees to respond, The Boot’s management said in a statement on Facebook.
The man then pulled out a knife and began cutting the bar employees who were working together to subdue him. Among them was Oldner, who recalled how he and his co-workers initially didn’t even realize that the patron was carrying a knife, according to Gilardi.
Oldner, a former offensive lineman for Tulane’s football team, suffered a cut to his arm, Gilardi said. She added that her son also tightened his belt around the leg of a co-worker who had been stabbed to slow the bleeding until first responders arrived.
The slasher was ultimately subdued, and police detained him for questioning. He had not been booked with a crime as of early Wednesday afternoon.
In a statement, Loyola University President Tania Tetlow identified another of the injured bar employees as Loyola student Sebastian Fernandez. Tetlow’s statement asked for prayers for Fernandez, his family and friends as he recovered from his injuries at University Medical Center.
Gilardi said she couldn’t believe college students could face such peril at the part-time jobs they rely on to support themselves.
“I wonder when did a part-time job become so dangerous?” Gilardi said Wednesday. “It’s a little disturbing (and) … terribly frightening for these 20-something-year-old kids who are dealing with real issues just because they’re trying to earn a living while going to college.”
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Email Ramon Antonio Vargas at rvargas@theadvocate.com
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